Giving Thanks in Hilton Head

Monday, November 26, 2012

Eric and I decided to try and be adults this year by sending out holiday cards.  His dad graciously agreed to take some pictures that we could use for the card.  So we had a mini photo shoot just before Thanksgiving dinner and here are a few out takes. And that sunrise?  That was the view from our bedroom!!  Our favorite thing to do is sleep with the sliding glass door open and blinds cracked so we can hear the ocean all night and roll over in bed to this view.  When I have trouble sleeping at night, I usually try to focus on my breathing and picture the ocean sounds we hear at night in Hilton Head.  It was beyond nice to be in this place for a few nights.  I didn't have to imagine the ocean sounds, just listen to the incredible real deal. 

There is so much to be thankful for this year.  Our wedding, honeymoon, a move back home to  California (San Francisco at that!), a sweet baby on the way, and a new job doing what I love in our new city!  

Two Fridays ago was an especially wonderful day filled with great upon greater news.  To back up a bit, two Tuesdays before that, the substitute teaching pool finally opened up in SF (it's so competitive, that even subbing jobs have been closed since we've lived here!) and I went to the interviews.  After being interviewed for a few minutes and discussing my experience as a teacher in Austin for the past three years, I was recommended for two permanent, full-time positions (not subbing)!  A week and a half later, I had interviewed at both schools and was called back for second interviews/demo lessons at each school.  This brings us back to what I will call THAT EXTREMELY FORTUNATE FRIDAY where:  I began the day at 9am with the second demo lesson at the second school, left for our second trimester ultrasound and checked my phone to see a job offer from the first school, met Eric at the second trimester ultrasound and learned the GOODGOOD news that our baby is healthy and there were no "soft or red flags" to speak of,  received a phone call with a job offer from the school where I had taught the demo lesson that morning, shared I was expecting with my first choice job offer, and was congratulated by my new supervisor who was very accepting and welcoming!  

I am still reeling from all of the fantastic news of that day.  I had spent so much time worrying and fearing having to find a teaching job in California.  At times, I was frozen and overwhelmed by the thought of trying to replace my old job and school, which I loved so much.  But after barely looking and receiving two offers from schools where I could be happy, I am very much relieved, grateful, and elated!!  I am so excited about my new job, too.  It's at a Title I middle school in the Mission (my favorite neighborhood in SF because it's sunny, lively, and home of the best food in the city) and feels like a "sister school" to my old school/job in Austin.  The demographics of the students are very similar,  the staff seems equally as committed and amazing, and overall, I just got a good feeling from the place. I'm really looking forward to being back in the classroom again--I seriously got such a high from just planning and teaching those two demo lessons!  I'm also super excited to learn from a strong team and to be able to contribute my experience and knowledge to help the campus grow.  My new school is a "hard to staff" school.  It was almost shut down.  The same thing happened at my old school in Austin and the amazing folks there turned it around to become the top performing Title I MS in the district; we got to a point where, in certain subjects, we were competitive with affluent schools!  My heart quickens as I type because I feel so strongly about what I do and am just so incredibly thankful to have the opportunity to continue to do so in our new home state.  

Am I worried about returning back to work full-time in a stressful (yet REWARDING) job in the middle of this pregnancy?  A tiny bit, yes.  But overall, I know I am VERY lucky for being able to rest when I needed to during the first half.  I have been feeling great and as you can see, have so many things for which to be thankful.  I think the baby will benefit from mama's heart experiencing the teaching highs once again.  I realize that the lows come with those highs, but the highs always outweigh and are why I couldn't imagine doing anything else.


Good morning, South Carolina

Eric and I spent Thanksgiving in Hilton Head, SC, with his dad and grandparents. It was lovely and I was definitely sad the trip was just for a few days. We enjoyed the ocean views, sounds, and smells, and amazing oranges and pinks in the sky from the sun rising and setting. We took walks on the beach and rode bikes to a local brunch of creme brûlée French toast.

On Thanksgiving morning, Eric felt the baby move in my belly for the first time!! I smiled much this holiday remembering the hours spent last Thanksgiving in Hilton Head perusing Pinterest and making plans for the wedding. Just think--we'll get to share next Thanksgiving with our sweet new family member. <3

Mio & Mrs. Johnson's

Sunday, November 25, 2012

I present you with a beloved person and place we visited a few weekends ago on our quick trip to Austin.

Mio is our dear friend, who was with Eric in the math PhD program at UT. Mio is one of my favorite people. He has the coolest name ("mine" in Italian), great style, quirky sense of humor, and tells really good stories.

Mrs. Johnson's is only home of the best doughnuts I've ever tasted in my life--but you have to order what's fresh! And we did just that. After some Moscow mules with Mio (virgin for me, of course) at The Tigress, we all headed to Mrs. Johnson's for delicious in our moufs. I got so excited by the running doughnut-making machines that I neglected to take pictures of the ready-to-eat doughnuts! You'll just have to trust me--they are great. I've spent many a late night with friends--especially my grad school cohort--at Mrs. Johnson's, devouring doughnuts so fresh they melt in your mouth.

Sunday brunch

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

That first picture is awful and hilarious! I like how EK accidentally got in it to give Rene a perfect elbow head.

This Sunday, our sweet friends came over and we all cooked brunch together. EK made banana cinnamon waffles, Rene cooked up the bacon, and Selena prepared an awesome sweet potato hash and sautéed kale. (I assisted and cleaned as we went.). Our kitchen is fairly small, but I think it was especially nice to "dance" around each other as we cooked.

The food turned out insanely delicious, too. One of the many perks this second trimester is that food now tastes especially good--complete opposite of first trimester! I also find myself very much enjoying things that would have me gag in the past (pre-pregnancy), like bacon fat in the sweet potato hash. All I can say is, NOM.

I hope you are enjoying the extra joy and excitement in the air already from the holidays. Last night, I went to yoga then hopped on a red-eye for Hilton Head, SC. I love how there are white rocking chairs in both the NC and SC airports. I'm a little delirious, but looking forward to seeing family and the ocean!

Things that go bump in the night

Sunday, November 18, 2012

This is for my wonderful mother-in-law who recently requested a profile pic of the baby bump. The bump has definitely made it's appearance since right around 16 weeks (today I'm 18.5 wks) and I absolutely love it!

I got a little dressed up because Eric and I went to a friend's karaoke birthday party downtown. We had our own private room and it was so hilarious! I love karaoke because people get to unleash their silly.

Highlights of the evening: EK singing Bulletproof by La Roux (that song is so danged catchy and great!) with dear friends, Birthday Boy singing Beyonce, Jason nailing Hello (Is It Me You're Looking For?) by the one and only Lionel (I command you drop everything you're doing and watch that video in its entirety RIGHT NOW), Carol picking Last Christmas by Wham!, and Chia singing Debbie Gibson. There was also this guy who completely impressed me by choosing Mariah Carey, Halo, and multiple other lady-centric hits that I just did not expect him to pick. I love it when people are confident enough to own liking things that are just plain awesome. Case in point, I thought Eric was at his cutest last night when he choose to sing Brittany Spears, Toxic by his lonesome. No shame = HOTTT.

I took the second pic around 4 months ago when I was in the dressing room at Target, deciding whether or not to get the dress.  (Didn't mean to look so serious, but was just using a pic to see how the dress looked.  Do y'all do that, too?  I mean, the mirror's right there, but since my trusty iphone, I now need to see how potential clothes photograph before I buy them.  Crazy?  Definitely!)  The exciting thing is that this must have been just around the time we got pregnant!  I like to think about how there could have been a tiny bean growing in the belly and I didn't yet know.

Three Boos

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Cuteness increases exponentially when husbands fall asleep with their glasses on and snuggling cats.

Fall sniffs

Monday, November 5, 2012

Our friends Jason and Carol kindly gifted us a bag of apples from their backyard tree!  I was so excited to get these and decided since I've been baking quite a bit lately, that I'd take a break and make some unsweetened applesauce in our neglected slow cooker.  It was so easy and so sweet--adding extra sugar would have really been unnecessary.  I left the skins on because they're good for you; they also added a nice texture. 

All I did was chop apples, add the juice of a lemon, a teaspoon of vanilla, a little water to just barely cover the bottom of the slow cooker, and a liberal sprinkling of cinnamon.  Then I set the slow cooker on high, let it fill our house with wonderful smells for 4 hours, and used a potato masher to mash away.

Now that the slow cooker is out, I'm ready to try more recipes that will fill our apartment with delicious fall sniffs.      

P.S. Tonight we're going to see Jens Lekman at The Fillmore!

Cutest Halloween Candy

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Miniature gummi bears!

Bun warmers

Friday, November 2, 2012

Four months

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Tomorrow is my first "centering" meeting with other expecting mamas, their partners, a midwife, and an obstetrician. At our first UCSF appointment with our midwife, she gave us the option of continuing to meet individually with her or to try centering. The latter is meeting in small groups with other mama-to-be's to discuss the goings ons of pregnancy. She told us it was more commonly practiced in Europe, but has been growing in the US. The idea is that you learn more from your peers and through discussion than from only listening to a doctor or midwife.

This idea is completely in line with my teaching philosophy and how I was trained as an educator.  In my classroom last year, we constantly placed the students in small groups to work with and teach each other. They truly did learn more and were so much more engaged!!

The midwife and obstetrician will facilitate our group, while still meeting with each mother individually. My prenatal yoga teacher shared with me that centering and the bonds she formed with those in her group were some of her favorite parts of pregnancy. I hope my experience is similar!

(P.S. On a trip to Goodwill today I found these MUCH needed maternity jeans for $5. Also, it was too difficult to pass up new,  red Ava Kork Ease platforms for $9. Score!)

seaglass and squirrels All rights reserved © Blog Milk Powered by Blogger