I am going to allow whoever still reads this to judge us for just one moment.
We are sorry it has been 6 months since the last update.
I am aware that that is a very long time.
I decided the best way to catch up anyone who reads our blog would be to go through our iphone pictures, seeing as how we always have our phones with us and usually document any event worthy of documenting.
The Gamecocks won. : ) and while we were not together to watch the game ( good marital advice for any other "houses divided") we realized later that we both ended up at a BBQ place about an hour away from each other. What's the saying, "you can lead Carolina kids to the rockies but they will still eat BBQ"? something like that.
We had the most adorable Christmas tree EVER.
Loved every minute of having it in our house and proceeded to burn through 3 Christmas Tree scented candles just to make the entire house smell like Christmas for almost 2 months.
We went to our first Nuggets game and my first NBA game ever.
Still don't really care about the NBA. Sorry. But it was fun to go.
The next 20 or so pictures in our Iphones are either of the drive to the mountain, the moutians or us bundled up falling down mountains on two sticks. I have still yet to fall in love with skiing. It may just not be my thing. But Layne on the other had has been spending lots of time with "Beatrice" his other lover (aka Breckenridge). I have lost him to the mountain for many a Saturdays but its ok because by the time he comes home from skiing he is so poopped he just wants to watch movies and cuddle ( my favorite!)
Laynes loves "tossing" sophie. He thinks they are bonding. Good thing cats always land on all fours. (no cats were injured in the taking of this photo. she always lands on the bed.)
We made our own "General Tso". It tasted good but made our house smell like chinese food for 2 weeks... NEVER doing that again.
So now that they have all been distrubuted to their new homes I can show you the things I made for Christmas. I wish I had taken more pictures of my first conquests but this one group shot will have to do. Gifts this year included purses (large, small and wristlets) hot pads that were soso, and cable knit hats. It was so much fun to make and even more fun to give homemade things. I see more of this in the future.
Layne had his last day of the semester. He looked good! The tie played jinggle bells and was from the dollar store.
We spent lots of time at home and with family. I love home especially at Christmas, so many old and new traditions ( this being the first Christmas Layne and Ashley experienced "Hollingsworth Christmas") Lots of laughs and lots of food. Lots of celebrations with lots of good friends.
After two weeks we came home, tried to convince our cat she should still like us even though we left her and bought a new TV with our Christmas money.
From January to March was a combination of:
being really cold
the cat being really cold
And me learning how to drive in a blizzard. (no it did not go well but yes I am still alive)
and that one day full of heart shaped things.
See it only took a couple minutes to catch you up from November to March. I am proud of my own organization with this blog post.
Next post will be March Madness and not the kind you are thinking of.
Disclaimer: I apologize for those reading who like to organize their thoughts, mine are just a string of unrelated things.
I (Katie) have a job.
Just going to let that sink in for a bit.
I am working with a staffing agency so I am all over Denver doing all kinds of work. I am enjoying it so far and I believe it will be a good fit for me. No better way to learn to be a nurse than to learn how to be a nurse in alllll sorts of situations. I have been mainly working H1N1 vaccination clinics around town which has been very interesting. They are 6 hour long clinics with 15 nurses vaccinating and we have vaccinated over 1,000+ people each time.
Layne also has a new job.
Some of you may be wondering how in the world is that possible... we were too.
Layne is now a 6th grade math teacher (for those that are behind, he started the year as a 6th and 8th grade science teacher).
The logistics are still being worked out but starting this past monday Layne said goodbye to his "young scientists" as he called them and hello to some mathematicians.
It is a odd thing to think about but we think it is a good thing. The school was in desperate need of a math teacher and were giddy to find out he had enough credit hours to teach math.
Ill let him tell you more about it but I thought the blog world might like to know.
My mom bought me a sewing machine as an early Christmas present when she was out here and I have been going to town. Let me just tell any family members that are reading this to expect a homemade Christmas present! I am loving it! I would LOVE to put up pictures of my first conquests on the sewing machine but like I said they are all christmas presents and no one likes a spoiled surprise.
THE BLIZZARD of OCTOBER hit while Layne was home for Clemson homecoming.
29 inches of snow in the month of October, 24 of it the weekend he was gone. Can I add to this story that I have never not once in my life ever ever driven in even a flurries of snow. I was super brave except for the fact that I asked one of Laynes friends to drive to the airport and pick up Tracy who was here to visit. Tracy and I had a great time, we got bundled up (like the little brother in A Christmas Story) and had fun in our park just falling back into the snow. It is difficult to make a snow angel when the snow is as deep and you. Funny thing is that Layne missed it ALL. snowed after he left and was melted when he got home. How does 2 feet of snow melt in one day!?
My Halloween costume, incase you can't read the name tag, I was
the Appalachian trail/Argentinian lover. Layne was supposed to be my Mark Sanford but when he decided to go the Clemson game he gave permission for one of his friends to be my Mark.
Sophie's Halloween costume!!! She is a lady bug! She loved every minute of it. Until she did her possessed running backwards dance trying to get it off of her head.
November 1st I started burning my Christmas Tree candle and since then I am all about Christmas. Not to skip over thanksgiving but since we will not be in South Carolina for thanksgiving my mind is already at Christmas. We are, however, going to cook thanksgiving dinner. We bought a frozen turkey the other day. We did a practice run last week and it went well so I think the meal will be edible. :)
Layne went snowboarding yesterday. It was 70 degrees in Denver but there is snow in the mountains. He equated it the best day in new york. And that was with only 5 of 100+ runs open at Keystone. I think I will lose him to the mountains for the rest of the winter weekends. I plan on going some but I have to learn to like skiing first. It's the whole "out of control" thing that I am not so fond of.
Francis the fish has decided to stop eating, which I think is a bad idea.
After several nights of sleeping in the bathroom Sophie the cat has decided not to wake us up at 2am, 3am, 4am and 5am.
We are now bike owners ($25 from salvation army)
Mom-in-law will be here Friday.
Mom will be here Oct. 1
Tracy will be here Oct. 29
Nesting still in process, more pictures of the house coming soon.
Speaking of nesting - I, after much bargain shopping training from my mother, purchased $360.92 of merchandise for $23.94!
I changed the layout... too girly?
I recently was home for a wedding, it was so good to see everyone and spend time with family. My trip was supposed to be a quick fly in and back out but since I still don't have a job I was able to stay a few extra days (thanks mom!).
Groucho's with the lovely clair bear and my favorite set of twins!
Graham came to grouchos too!
We went to Grahams house on Church St. AMAZING.
We headed on to Beaufort for the wedding and Clair decided that she now likes children.
She baby sat a bridesmaids baby during pictures and exclaimed " I put it to sleep!"
Clair and I drove back from Beaufort late and got pulled over, I may have been speeding just a little bit, the officer was very nice and as soon as he saw that my last name was Madden he started asking me if I am related to so and so. I told him that I am a new Madden and I am not sure who all of my new relatives are. He enjoyed our conversation so much that he told to have a great night and a safe trip... not even a written warning. This is small because I never told mom about this event.When we finally got home I slept in my old room and moms new office. The rest of the weekend was filled with girl time (movies, m&ms, cheetos and shopping) and Kitten sitting!!!
Meet Tumbo aka Bo
He is too cute and sooo teeny tiny.
Could not drive around Lexington without going to see this place -
Best day of my life was in this church almost 6 months ago.
Came home to my sweet husband and a clean house - he is amazing.
Back to the world of Job hunting and nesting and experiencing Denver.
This was one of our most recent experiences -
Tour de Fat.
(notice my Impala Lucy, getting a front row seat to the parade)
This pro Bike festival started with a parade. No Halloween I have ever seen compares to these crazy costumes. multiple hundreds, possibly thousands of bikes paraded down our street. Being very intrigued we decided to check out the rest of the festival. Live music, lots of food, and lots of recycling. It was crazy but fun! People here really love their bikes!
Thats all from me... I tell Mr. Madden to update on his 6th and 8th graders.
Tomorrow is D-day. At this point, however, I don't even know what grades/subjects I will be teaching.
Tomorrow the 6th graders come all by themselves. I suppose this is a way to ease them into the brave new world of middle school life (lockers, swirlies, zits, girls, etc.). The problem is, we don't have schedules for them. We don't know what classes they should go to, and they certainly don't. As a 6th grade team we decided that we would just split them up and rotate them through all of the 6th grade teachers until we have schedules for them. That will probably be Monday.
Back to the point that I don't know what grade I'm teaching. This is because the registration numbers did not match predictions made in the spring. There are way more 6th and 7th graders than 8th graders, and the administration is needing to move teachers around quickly to accomodate the lopsided school population. There are several factors outside of the control of my school that have led to this situation.
1. Denver Public Schools uses open registration. This means that students can enroll in any school they want to, so predicting class sizes from year to year is more of an art than a science.
2. The Montbello community is very unstable. People come and go with alarming frequency. Here is an article from a few years ago that outlines what happened in the housing market .
3. Students are still registering. The students numbers are changing, significantly, on a daily basis.
So I am in limbo. It is pretty stressful not knowing what to expect for the rest of the year, but I have a plan for tomorrow. And tomorrow I will have a plan for Thursday. And then I will have a plan for Friday. Though this habit is not going to turn my students into incredible scientists, for now it will have to do.
I am excited and terrified. And it is just weird to think that I am about to be entrusted with 200+ 11 year olds. Up to 41 per class, 6 times a day. What am I getting into?
Side story: Here is a picture of a TV that used to be in a bar, and for $25 bucks is now about to be in our living room! And they gave us a free meal at the place, so really it's free. I know you're jealous.