Thursday, November 13, 2014

Reflecting About my Place in Georgia

After having relocated to Georgia to Ohio, I moved into a duplex with my best friend Everett and pal Jared.  I've blogged a couple of times about having roommates, so I'm leaving that aspect out of this post and am only focusing on the housing itself.


**It's nice only having neighbors on one side of us.  I've lived in apartments before where I've had people on both sides and also above and below me.  For me, living directly under other people isn't really ideal.  In college, a girl that lived right above me would work out very early in the AM in her room.  More power to her, but it woke my other roommate and I up, and at some points I feared for my life because the ceiling seriously looked like it was going to cave in.  Since I know what it was like to live under people, when I lived above people I was always paranoid about walking around too much and bothering them/vacuuming.

** It has a backyard.  This is a luxury I haven't always had.  Also, Ev's mom took care of all the mowing for us.  She says she enjoys staying active, so none of us had any problem with that!

** The rent is pretty cheap.  Since we split everything three ways, I ended up saving a lot of money.

** It's located in a safe neighborhood.  The duplex is in a small town outside of Savannah and the crime rate there is very low.  I only felt scared one night when Claude kept barking and growling at the window when Ev & Jared weren't home.  I never felt worried going for walks by myself and almost always felt pretty secure.

** It's quiet.  Our place is located in a residential neighborhood, and the main highway is far enough away that we weren't disturbed by traffic.  Sometimes I could hear a train go by and we could hear dogs barking occasionally, but that's about it.  Most of the neighbors were very considerate.

** The landlord left us alone.  I've been in places before where the landlord comes in to check up on his/her property.  Also, in college it was kind of awful because they kept having to show our place again and again until they had someone on the lease for next year.  The landlord has never once been in  our place since I've been there, and I appreciate that!

** There's no driveway.  You would think this would be a negative, but I love not having a driveway.  If we had one, we would constantly be blocking each other and would have to rearrange our cars or else someone would have to park on the street.  All we do is pull through the backyard and park in the grass.  (Is this a Southern thing?  I'm not sure, but it works for me!)


** There IS someone living on the other side of us.  Yes, I know I just said that I liked having people on just one side of us, but I'd prefer to live in a house and not in a duplex.  I'd rather not have any people on any sides, haha.

** There is only one bathroom.  This is my BIGGEST dislike of all.  Having to share one bathroom with two guys is not my dream situation.  We make the best of it and try to ask each other ahead of time if anyone needs to go to the bathroom before we take showers, but getting ready in the morning can turn into a hassle if all three of us have to leave at the same time (which is often the case.)

** The washing machine is inside and the dryer is outside.  I guess I'd just prefer for both the washer and dryer to be inside because sometimes if I heard the neighbors out there and I didn't feel like talking to them, I'd just leave my clothes in the dryer until I heard them go in.  Also, more bugs got in because the door would constantly be opening and shutting.

** It's a bit out of the way... In terms of driving to the historic district of Savannah, it was about a half-hour away.  It was also about 20 minutes from I-95 which is the highway I need to take to get to work.

** There isn't a dishwasher.  The three of us go through a lot of dishes.  Jared loves to cook so a dishwasher could really be useful and save us time.

What do you love about the place you live in?  Is there anything you wish you could change?

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Humpday Confessions

Ah, how I've missed blogging!!  The lesson plans can wait--I've been dying to post a confessions post for some time now.

*When you blog about a topic, do you constantly "introduce" that person on your blog?  I never know what to do. For example, I blog about my sister Denise a lot, but is it necessary to keep introducing her as my sister?  I want my new readers (if I even have any since my last post was 50 million years ago in blog-time) to know whom I'm talking about, yet I feel like people who have been following me for awhile are like, "I get it already."  :)  

* I'm surprised at what my students fight over.  All of our pencils are just the boring, typical yellow #2 pencils.  When I saw that I was relieved because in some classes that I've subbed in, kids fight over who gets the red/blue/yellow pencil. Hahaha, but I was wrong to think that there would be no problems with the pencils because my students ARE actually arguing over whether or not their pencil's ferrule (the metal band that holds up the eraser) is silver or gold.  They all want to write with the "golden" pencils, and there aren't enough golden pencils for every kid to have one.  

* I truly wish that teachers' salaries were higher in North Carolina, and I'm sure that those who actually teach in NC are with me on this! I've been contemplating moving closer to Denise so that I will be able to see my niece grow up, but this pay scale is pretty dismal.  At least now teachers actually can get raises every 5 years.  During the recession there was a pay freeze meaning NO raises.  

*  Truthfully, I've also been thinking a lot about teaching internationally again.  My fantastic experiences in Korea as an English as a 2nd language teacher are what made me go into teaching in the first place.

* There is a Dunkin' Donuts 2 minutes away from where I'm living now and I'm not sure if that's good or bad.  It might be a little TOO convenient.

*I finally signed up for Influenster after hearing about it *exactly* 39483904839 times.  ;)  I just got the Moda Vox Box in the mail and must say that I cannot wait to try out the Hair Food mask because I'll try anything to help with all the tangles I get.  Plus, I've been meaning to check out a new hair mask for awhile.  Is this even really a confession?  Whatever, I'm going with it.

* Teachers at my school are permitted to wear a school t-shirt and jeans on Friday if they buy a school t-shirt and pay a fee of $25.  I spent the $39 and am dying for my shirt to arrive so I don't have to dress up on Fridays.  This is some of the best money I've ever spent!

* I've heard the stereotype, "Military kids have good behavior" a lot and I'm finding it to be true (which is, of course, awesome!)

* In Ohio, most of my friends were younger than me because I worked at a movie theater and those typically are full of a lot of college students/teenage workers.  Also, most college students I studied education with were traditional students, so they were also younger than me.  At the school I work at now, I think I'm one of the youngest teachers and so the people that I talk to the most (still feel that it's early on to say "friend", haha) are all in their late 40's or in their 50's.    There's nothing wrong with that, but it's just funny that I went from hanging out with almost all 20-somethings to 40 and 50-somethings.  I must say that it's kinda nice to keep getting referred to as "a young person," especially considering I was one of the oldest ones at the movie theater!

* I'm trying really hard to be a cheapskate.  Currently I'm trying to build up my savings account since I had to use up so much of it while I was without a job.  After that, my next goal is to pay off all of one of my student loans that currently has a balance of $6,037.68.    I'm hoping to be able to pay it off in six months, but that might be wishful thinking.

Are you an Influester?  Are most of your friends older, younger, or the same age as you?

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

YES to Fall Flowers!

Nothing adds a beautiful pop of color to a room quite like fresh flowers do.  In addition, a bouquet of flowers can really transform the overall appearance of a room.  When Adam from The Bouqs contacted me and asked if I would like to get a bouq sent to me, I jumped at the chance knowing all along that I had the perfect spot in mind for them--in my new classroom!

Since I just started teaching, I haven't really added those personal touches to my room just yet, so I figured that having some gorgeous flowers on display would certainly be appealing to the eye!

Ordering from the Bouqs was easy as pie, and I appreciated that I could schedule my delivery.  It was nice knowing just when my flowers would get here so that I could plan accordingly.  When my flowers did arrive, I was having a particularly rough day, and as I mentioned earlier this month, flowers always make me feel better. When my Chinese co-teacher saw them she got a big smile on her face and referenced our terrible day paired with the arrival of the flowers by saying, "We still have to try to make ourselves happy!"  As one of my students always says, "Can I get an AMEN?" 

I kept the flowers in a vase on my bookshelf behind my "desk" (that's really just a table with all my stuff piled on top.)  The bouq was a real conversation starter.  So many of my co-workers commented on "those amazing flowers," and I even had a parent bring them up during conferences!  I was still getting these remarks even four days after I initially got the flowers.  

There were just too many awesome bouqs to choose from in the Volcano Collection, but in the end I decided to go with the Dawn bouq because I'm missing fall in Ohio quite a bit and the color is perfect for autumn.  

Here is the description for the Dawn bouq: Our Orange premium Roses are a magical sight when fully bloomed.  Grown on a Volcano and cut-to-order, this flower bunch will blow them away like a breathtaking sunrise.  Our flowers are shipped straight from our eco-friendly, sustainable farms on the Volcano to your recipient's door, with Free Delivery!  Color: Orange
Please note that colors may vary slightly from photos

Truthfully, I have never ordered myself flowers online before, but after this experience, I would like to start treating myself to a bouq or two more often.  Just look at these arrangements offered on their site and you won't be able to blame me... :)

Cake n' Cream 


Since I was pleased with my overall experience, I may have to order another bouq in the near future.  I have my sights set on the Ladybug bouq because it contains both of my favorite colors and would match all the red in my Chinese themed classroom. 

Which one is your favorite?  Would you ever order from the Bouqs?

**These flowers were provided to me for free in exchange for an honest review.  I will also get credit for any purchase made from the links in my post.**