missing my books

i have been so overwhelmed by school lately that my reading for enjoyment time has taken a hit. when i only had to worry about working full time, i averaged about one book a week. but now that i work full time and go to school full time, i've seriously been slacking on the reading. i've been working on the same book {An Ordinary Man by Paul Rusesabagina who inspired the movie Hotel Rwanda} for about two or three weeks now. it's incredibly upsetting.

i'm sure that i could find twenty minutes here or there to read, but it's just not the same. i can't wait until i have a break from reading assignments, papers, observation hours, lesson plans and presentations to read again.

i have a few books waiting for me...

Lie My Teacher Told Me by James Loewen
Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse

... to name a few.


corn maze at midnight

last night i had my first official fall experience... i got lost in a corn maze. my friend ashley's parents own a pumpkin farm and for her golden birthday we had a party at the farm. yep, totally a wisconsin thing to do.

that was the first time that i've ever been in a corn maze. we went out at midnight with only the moon to light our way. and, of course, friends jumping out of the corn stalks to scare me, but that actually made it more fun. so gripping my best friend's hand for dear life, i ran through the maze and after an hour finally made it out. it was so much fun. and just a little terrifying.

it was a fun night, only thing that was missing was apple bobbing... but i find that a little gross anyway.

{image via weheartit}


If historical events had Facebook

I found this online and thought it was so funny that I had to share. I love that someone spent the time to think through these events and I would love to read more. Can you imagine them?

Read more posts here.


Love for Fall

It's been a bit chilly lately and I LOVE it. I'm tired of the heat and humidity of summer already. Why I wish it was fall:

I love cardigans.
I'm tired of a/c and sweating.
Crisp, cool weather.
Hot apple cider.
Pumpkin spice lattes.
I have a mustard yellow purse I'm dying to use.
Leaves change colors.
School is in session.
Jeans. All the time.
Pumpkin patches.
College football.
Candy corn and caramel apples.

{image via weheartit}


Remembering 9/11

September 11th, a day that will live in infamy. This is the "John F. Kennedy assassination moment" of my generation. Everyone my age will look back on that sad day nine years ago and remember exactly where they were and how they felt at that moment. For me, it's like it was yesterday. I was a junior sitting in Mr. Ramey's office as a teacher assistant when a friend poked his head in to tell us a plane crashed into the World Trade Center. I had the same initial reaction as my teacher: it must have been a small one-pilot plane that flew off course. We quickly saw how wrong we were.

It wasn't until I saw the Towers fall that I actually understood the gravity of the day. I spent the rest of the school day watching the news of the event, unsure of what it meant for our country and the millions of people it personally affected. I remember my history teacher said she bet Osama bin Laden had a part in the tragedy. It was the first time I heard his name, but definitely not the last.

“Time is passing. Yet, for the United States of America, there will be no forgetting September the 11th. We will remember every rescuer who died in honor. We will remember every family that lives in grief. We will remember the fire and ash, the last phone calls, the funerals of the children.” -President George W. Bush

Where were you when the planes crashed into the Twin Towers?

Soda or Pop? or Coke??

I saw this on the
LAist and I just had to share it. What do you call those carbonated beverages you drink? I'm definitely a "pop" girl, which seems to be a little odd based on this map. I still don't understand why the South refers to any soda or pop as "Coke" though. It just doesn't make sense. And what would the "other" category say??


Fantasy Team

My friends and I held our fantasy football draft just a few days ago and overall, I'm happy with my team.

Aaron Rodgers QB
Rashard Mendenhall RB
Reggie Wayne WR
Pierre Thomas RB
Dallas Clark TE
Chad Ochocinco WR
Matt Forte RB
Clinton Portis RB
Ricky Williams RB
Santana Moss WR
Carson Palmer QB
Owen Daniels TE
Steelers D/ST D/ST
Nate Kaeding K
Devery Henderson WR
David Garrard QB
Steve Breaston WR

I drafted Aaron Rodgers #1 in our draft. {I got a lot of flak for that, but I decided to pick him over Chris Johnson. It was a tough choice.} My friends were actually teasing me later that I was trying to pick all Green Bay Packers. {I was to some extent.} Now I just have to remember to check when players have byes and replace them. I don't have a good history of doing that.


Remembering Katrina

A few days ago, thousands of people were brought back to the day five years ago when Hurricane Katrina ripped through the Gulf Coast. Thousands and thousands of lives were turned upside down. I can't imagine how difficult it must still be for those people. All of the remembrance news specials bring back a lot of memories for me as well. {And so I was sucked in to watching most of them.}

Almost five years ago, during the spring break after Katrina, I boarded a bus for New Orleans along with hundreds of other UW students as part of John Edwards' program Opportunity Rocks. We didn't know what to expect when we reached New Orleans, but anything we could have ever imagines wouldn't even compare. As we drove across bridges and down long, straight roads, it was difficult to discern where water was supposed to be and where it hadn't receded yet.

We saw boats docked on front lawns, fridges laying on their sides in the middle of roads, swimming pools black with debris, deer antlers mounted on roofs and everything else. After finally finding out cots after a long day traveling {we had problems with FEMA locating our cots}, we found out our assignment. We were to remove debris and gut houses to their students inSt.Bernard Parish, just outside of New Orleans. Our training included lessons on how to spot and kill poisonous snakes and spiders. {Talk about intimidating.}

The block we worked on not only experienced the levee breach, which left 5-12 feet of standing water, but an oil tanker also spilled it's contents on doorsteps. So we pulled on head to toe white jumpsuits, laced up our steel toed work boots, slipped on our gloves, covered our faces with goggles and face masks and got to work. We drudged through about 1-2 feet of oil sludge as we worked to empty the house.

I had never moved anyone from a home, so this as a first experience was definitely odd. There were mice hiding beneath furniture, black mold covering walls and a fridge toppled over spilling water and food remains. It took us about a week just to clean out the one house, but with the rest of the Opportunity Rocks volunteers, we cleaned up most of the block. I wish I could have done so much more.

During the nights, we were able to visit downtown New Orleans and the French Quarter. Most of the French Quarter seemed alive and doing fine, but there were still areas with boarded up windows.

It was an experience that I will never forget.

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