Sunday, October 19, 2014

Year in Review

LOTS of changes around here in the last year!  First, of all, we are no longer homeschooling.  This was a very hard decision for us, since we had homeschooled our daughter in grades K-5.  However, we decided that she would benefit from having a greater diversity of teachers, strong academic programs, and the chance to be more independent.  We found an awesome school for her and she is already thriving there.  Here is a photo of her from our summer vacation, ready to take on the waves!

Another BIG and AMAZING and AWESOME change is that my husband and I now both work during the day!  For years he worked at night to acccommodate homeschooling and keep our daughter out of child care. It was great for her - she got tons of time with each parent.  However for the parents, it was the worst!  I am really crazy about my husband and for 8 long years I only saw him two evenings a week plus summers.  It was SO HARD.  I cannot emphasize enough how hard it was.  I felt near cracking point. But this past Spring he got a job offer within the organization and is now home with me and our daughter every evening!  It's wonderful and relaxing and the best thing that every happened.  And great timing - we celebrated out 15th wedding anniversary this summer by renewing our vows at the spot we had our first kiss. 

We have an amazing new family member - my second nephew. He is one of the sweetest, happiest babies I have ever met.  We hadn't had a new baby in the family in 5 years so you can imagine how much kissing and squishing he got immediately!  I've been extra lucky to get to spend lots of time with him.  Hard to believe he is almost 10 months old.  

My one-year anniversary of my "new" job is tomorrow and I still love it as much as I did on day one.  I really feel like I am where I belong, sharing art with kids and helping them interpret the museum, as well as helping young adults gain experience and find their next steps.  I have also been very forturnate in the last year to have the opportunity to go back to school and I have been taking one class a semester, choosing things that relate to my job.  Last semester I took Arts of China and this semester I'm taking Printmaking 1. 

I will say I find the homework for printmaking much less stressful than writing papers.  I am not sure why - I've always been a strong writer - but wow college is a lot of work.  I can't believe I ever took 5 classes and worked full time!  

Since last year there has been another major change in my life. I have entered an adult weight management program.  Technically, I was in it last year, but I was only doing the counseling portion of the program.  I was getting ready to jump in and really get moving. I'm doing great in it and I'm really happy!  I will have a whole separate post on that soon!

Saturday, November 30, 2013

A New Project

I decided yesterday that I would like to try my hand at a December Daily.  I realize I am late getting into the game, but a month in the life style album has always appealed to me so I am jumping in head first.  I chose a SN@P mini album to use and I'm going to start tomorrow and go through Dec 31.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Why I Love My New Job

Although I really enjoyed my old job as Museum Educator, I was getting a little restless, mostly because of my unpredictable schedule. Last month I became the new Art Discovery Center Coordinator at the same museum.  The ADC is a hands-on, interactive area of the museums with books, games, arts and crafts, dress up, and other activities for families.  So while I had grown to be fine with holding snakes, when this opportunity came along, I said goodbye to the ball python.  Now that I've shifted from a primarily-Science focus to a primarily-Art focus, I suddenly feel like I've come home.

This job is very different in other ways as well.  Now I'm responsible for staffing the ADC with qualified volunteers and staff, managing the yearly budget for supplies, and making sure that we are providing visitors with the highest quality experience we can.  As someone who spends a lot of my life volunteering, offering our volunteers the opportunity for development is a high priority for me. 
My new workspace is BEAUTIFUL.  There's no denying it's one of the most interesting and inviting places in Western Mass.  The murals are all on Asian and Buddhist themes, and it's going to take me a while to memorize the meaning behind all of them.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

How I Spent My Summer Vacation

I don't always work in the summer, but this year I got lucky!  I got to do a preschool music program at the museum where I work the rest of the year.  It was the first time we've tried a program like this, so it was new for everyone.  I thought it went very well, and I even got to be in our local newspaper, and got a letter from the mayor about it.  

It ran for six weeks and last week was my first week off!  I went to Cape Cod with my family.  We spent most of our time on the National Seashore.  My daughter's favorite thing is the "big waves," and we hear about them all year.  She swims and boogie boards for hours and hours, and I join in too.  

We also took her to Provincetown for the first time, and went to Carnival, which is something none of us had experienced before.  Thanks to Project Runway, Esme already knows all about drag queens, and how much goes into their elaborate costumes.  The people on the street before the parade were just as awesome as the parade itself.  

When I got home, I had a box from Sassafras Lass waiting for me!  When they closed up shop I was super disappointed that I'd never ordered one of their warehouse boxes so when this chance came up I jumped on it.  Love all my flowers, patterned papers, felties, foldies, etc.  So now I want to get to work!  I took lots of pics on vacaction so it's time for me to get scrapping!

Monday, August 12, 2013

My Birthday (and my fun presents!)

My sweet husband invited my brother to come up for my birthday.  We went to my favorite sushi place, and my brother even tried some!  Afterward we went to our favorite open mic night, and Ethan and I each performed two songs.  He did two original and I did two country western songs with my autoharp.  This was my first time performing solo in public and I was nervous!

Being anywhere with them is fun, but I was lucky that a couple of my friends stopped by as well, and I did pretty well once I got up there - just a couple minor mistakes.

I received some awesome scrappy birthda presents!  Here are two of my favorites:

I'm looking forward to adding some color to my projects, especially scrapbook pages, with these two new things.  I have always been into really BRIGHT colors, so I am loving the neon trends.  Hoping to get some scrappy time as early as this afternoon.  

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

My Summer So Far

We have yet to take our family vacation, so when the people around us are talking about summer drawing to a close, it doesn't sit quite right with me.  I have been working three days a week, and a big part of my job is running a preschool music program.  It's pretty close to a dream come true - playing my autoharp and singing with little kids!  My daughter has been with me some days, but mostly she's been enjoying camps and time with family.

This has also been the summer of scrapbooking!  I have a new friend who lives about a mile from me, has a daughter close in age, and loves to scrap!  So she's been encouraging and inspiring me!  Here are some of my recent layouts.