Month: September 2016

Newborn Spanish

The other day I was pleasantly reminded that my Spanish used to be around the level of “newborn” which for those of you taking language exams lands somewhere before A1…

I’m  your typical ‘I took years of Spanish in high school but then got to college and was like wait, QUE?’

It’s not uncommon. I’ve heard the same story  at least a hundred times because it is the immediate response to me telling someone that I’m a Spanish teacher. I usually get a sprinkling of phrases for  me to, I guess critique and respond with something like”oh wow, you’re so good at saying “como estas” you should pursue Spanish again… your highly authentic  one sided conversation really made me want to keep talking about high school Spanish.

I don’t feel offended by those conversations, although I surely could be, and probably should be. I don’t because I was that person, and I won’t because it doesn’t apply to where I teach at all. In Spanish 1 we reviewed the alphabet  for all of 5 minutes, and in one class I hate to say, we just didn’t “get to it.”

I have gone from newborn to full blown adopted Mexican. My dream of becoming a Mexican teenager that I never knew I had is pretty much coming true. To clarify, my Spanish is way  better after working with a predominantly Latino population in the US than it ever really got in Spain. In Logrono, I was teaching English all morning….and most afternoons…and then hanging out with English speaking friends. I was speaking plenty of Spanish as well with my roommates, and in other daily interactions, but it wasn’t growing and developing like it has been here where I am focused on teaching it.

With that said, my third year of teaching is not only easier because my Spanish is a little more flow-y, but I also am finding my stride  with being me. For three (or more) years prior, I was being someone else, or doing things that people said would help, and so they came out about as gracefully as  me trying to look like Beyonce when I dance  (think un-sexy noodle). Not to say that that doesn’t happen anymore, but I am more aware of it. I’m not stern, I don’t like to yell because I become a tomato, and I’d rather get punched in my healing jaw than tell someone that their plagiarism is so obvious that #icanteven….

Just the other day a kid took what he thought was a low key swig of Gatorade, so I thought I shot him “the look” but he took another sip, so out loud I said I’M LOOKING AT YOU AND IT’S NOT GOOD-got it?. Reading that made me crack up, but the message was received. I will never be that strict teacher- the one that you work really hard for because they are so tough. It sounds awesome, but ultimately I just have to be the teacher that I am. The one that gives you a sticker when you tell a funny story, or takes a few minutes for anecdotes (plus that’s a vocabulary word) about the day or the weekend. I think you can all see the pros and cons to that way of life- don’t worry though, so can I.

Pro is that kids make you things like “frog”  (picture below), con is…how did you find so much free time to make that frog during my class? Oh and bless you airborne-I have switched over to the fizzy drink kind though because chewing those giant tablets is not cool.


The other weekend we had the pleasure of attending a super fun wedding so I figured that I should get my makeup done- an area that I have always been helpless in despite the fact that it fascinates me and I love all things beauty and wellness. It was convenient because I also broke out like  the teenager that I am deep down inside, so I needed extra help.


I never knew all of the potential hidden in my brows. They are there, but nobody knows because they get all blond in random areas- enter brow pencil. I don’t think I need to look like that at school, but it’s nice to know that I could.

That concludes my week 10, made it through the wire update. I still can’t feel my lower lip, which is really inconvenient for eating and talking when for the most part I feel totally normal. Luckily it doesn’t affect my love life because I don’t have one, so I can’t really comment on how that will play out in the future…ideally the feeling will come back by the time I’m ready to like someone.




Back to…

After I shared the initial YouTube episode of Camille Rowe going on her wellness journey, three more episodes have come out. Aside from being on the fence about crystals and placing them all over me, it did get me into thinking about meditation. I even tried it. Three times.

There are all kinds of great benefits to giving yourself some “head space” TM,  I know I have the app. Ten minutes of breathing and letting thoughts come and go and stop all together, really makes you feel light and fluffy for a bit. I think if I did it more the world could be a wonderful place. Then I read that Goldie Hawn does some work for public schools called MindUp. Small  world since I’m also thinking about back to school.

A few weeks ago I didn’t think  this would be happening. I was ready to call disability and  be 9 months pregnant and take 2 weeks off, and luckily not have a baby.

My speech is still not 100% but it’s a high enough percentage  that people can understand me. Whether or not my students understand me will likely not be because of  my numb  lower lip…hehehe. Kids. Also…


Today marks exactly 7 weeks since I had surgery. Depending on if you have ever had surgery or double jaw surgery, you may think that’s a lot of time, or not that much time. I’m somewhere in the middle because I don’t know what’s coming next. Mainly wondering how many more weeks my  left nostril will be swollen shut for. HONESTLY THOUGH.

I do have to strangely enough thank surgery for my health kick plus free time to not only invent recipes, but record them in a recipe book. I just got tired of always having to look up- and re-look up recipes on my phone. Measurements aren’t such a big deal, but times and temps are kind of a big deal for baking.  Turns out you have to be on a payment plan to add your own videos to this site- yeesh- but if you follow me on snap chat, then you saw my recipe book- and if not here are some snaps of what I was making this morning!  I know, carrots are always just laying around- so why not make them into these yummy carrot cake protein cookies.

So many yums and so little  time. The breakfast and dessert section are likely the only pages to be seeing a lot of action in my little book. Total sweet tooth over here. Otherwise it’s like…bake the salmon, make the pasta, put the burger patty down on the hot pan and voila!

I’ve spent this luxurious final weekend making power points which always take about 3 hours more than I think- and then mindfully and mindlessly clicking through them like….will that take 5 minutes? 1 minute? 10 minutes? Will we all  end up just looking at each other silently? Could be worse. And then I was like bing- my mantra is that it can’t be  worse. This is year three. I somehow did this two other years without a single clue and nobody was harmed.

I set a reminder in my phone that says “Ironing festival” for four days in a row, and have yet to iron anything. I’m not sure what kind of motivation that will take, especially when I’m only interested in reading about motivation and then I get side tracked and then I’m on pinterest like, these pictures represent my new life.


I realize the picture of me smiling is heinous, and it’s a literal “I woke up like this” pic- but that is the biggest most normal smile I’ve had in 7 weeks! These are the celebrations of life  people. I should probably also explain the baby on a bus stop ad picture- that was what I looked like after surgery. Not like a baby, but the thing that is snaked up it’s nose was the look that I was working with. It just seemed like a small world that those ads were all over and I knew they’d go away as soon as I thought man, I should have taken a picture of me and that baby that I look like! The rest are just me chilling or in the car on the way to/from school.

My classroom  theme is “minimalist:trying, yet failing” The photo below isn’t even the most updated because there is an additional word “SUPER” in black with what looks to be rainbow sprinkle confetti on it.


The other thing you should keep in mind is that this is a shared  space. Picking a theme and owning it requires A LOT.  I can’t be like, welcome to my Spanish urban jungle, to two other male teachers.

Also themes are best kept to theme parties. And while we’re at it, not weddings, unless you are on Four Weddings in which case you highly entertain me with the fact that a wedding needs to have a theme. Always involving crystals.

Somehow the day has flown by, per usual. Every other day has been like molasses. Need  to go walk off some anxiety and make sure I’m up and fresh for my kiddos. Can’t wait to meet them.