Tuesday, August 31, 2010

What are little BOYS made of?

.:Unwrapping the gift of the little boys in my life this Tuesday/Wednesday:.

What are little boys made of, made of?

What are little boys made of?

Smiles and stains. . .

trucks and choo~choo trains.

That's what little boys are made of.

tuesdays unwrapped at cats

Lovely Photo - Wordless or Not-So-Wordless Wednesday at Aspire

Thursday, August 26, 2010

7 Quick Takes Friday


Question: What could cause my "vain" twenty~one year~old self not to care if snot and smooshed green beans are wiped upon my white shirt?
That would be if this little dumplin' flips backwards in her chair during lunchtime. Which she did.

These littles always have the same look on their faces when they take a spill; they look utterly shocked, but at the same time, they look right at me and know I'm coming for them.

It wasn't until after I had comforted her, calmed her down, and had her focused on devouring her mashed potatoes again that I noticed my shirt was decked out with the beans that had fallen with her and her boogies. And I didn't even care. :-)


After taking this past semester off, I'm returning to college this fall.
I transferred to a university here in my hometown, but I'm keeping the same major, of course: elementary education.

I'm learning that sometimes the plans we make for ourselves aren't always what God has in mind. Letting go is difficult, but "I'm had by the love unexpected, the hope still strong, the tender surprises only God can imagine," as so beautifully said by Ann Voskamp.


Here's another gal in the midst of making an academic transition:

Meet Princess Tiana, star of several Tiny Talk Tuesdays.

I would have included Princess Tiana's photo in my Lovely Photo Wednesday post along with the other little girl who is leaving the center, but I actually borrowed this pic from her mother's facebook and then edited it myself.

When I talk to Princess Tiana, I honestly feel like I'm speaking to an adult! She is so advanced and will do great in the Pre~K program. And she's clearly adorableness overload!!


One web tool that I have been utilizing and enjoying is the Colorzilla. This Firefox plug~in allows you to click on any color on any webpage and copy the color code to your clipboard; then all you have to do is paste the code where it belongs in your html! This point-and -click color dropper has been super handy as I've been making some changes to my blog. It's so much more convenient than trying to match colors and muddling through all of those six digit color codes!


One story that I saw on my Yahoo homepage a couple weeks ago that immediately captured my interest was about a woman who is making a dress every day for an entire year, using an old dress and making it new with a budget of $1 per day. That's 365 days, 365 dresses, and 365 dollars. Check out her site here!


I have enjoyed meeting up with my friend Marilea this summer and talking about everything from school and love to spiritual gifts and exorcisms. *Laughing* Marilea and I attended the same high school, but it's been since graduating that we've actually become closer friends. Funny how you think you know everything at 18, but things still manage to change! We've "met in the middle" and I'm glad for these life surprises.


"You did it: you changed wild lament into whirling dance;

You ripped off my black mourning band
and decked me with wildflowers.
I'm about to burst with song;
I can't keep quiet about you.
God, my God,
I can't thank you enough." ~Psalm 30:11-12

New Friend Fridays

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

You'd Be Hard Pressed to Find. . .

. . . a little girl who is more photogenic. . .

than this one.

This photo captures her essence to a tee. Can you see the spunk in her spring? The blaze in her eye?

Here is my most recent shot of her, after the summer sun has warmed her biracial skin to a golden brown, piercing green eyes dancing ~

Simply. Lovely.

No longer at the center where I teach, yesterday she began a pre~kindergarten program at one of the local public city schools. And she's still only 3!

Smart, creative, mature, nurturing, bossy a natural ~ born leader, NEVER wordless {Wednesday or otherwise},
I hope you learn SO MUCH this year and that you never lose your zest for life.
Miss you bunches! ~Miss Leah

Lovely Photo - Wordless or Not-So-Wordless Wednesday at Aspire

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Re~evaluating Product and Success

I've been reminded

to "enjoy every inch of the mess . . .

. . . and those responsible for it."

The crumbs, the scattered toys, the chaotic play areas

are signs of life, and life lived together.

"Miss Picasso, please clean up the blocks you were playing with before you dump out the farm animals."

"Fireball, we don't roll the markers off the table on purpose. Please pick those up."

"Muffin, you know better than to slap the puddle of apple juice you just spilled. Wash your hands, and here's a paper towel to clean up your mess."

These are important lessons to teach young ones, but is a spotless classroom true success? A schedule with seamless and smooth transitions a sign of a good teacher? Are the products that truly matter the ones that are seen?

What about the invisible moments, the ones that no one but God sees, ones that change and shape these young lives? Perhaps, just maybe, my type~A tendencies need to fall by the wayside in order to truly invest in these moments of our lives intertwined that will vanish before I'm ready.

Even when my flip flops adhere to the sticky floors, ripping them off my feet and leaving them stuck to the floor in my wake.

"Sure, let's read another story. This sweeping can wait."

"So I saw that there is nothing better than that a {wo}man should rejoice in {her} work. . " ~Ecc. 3:22

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Baby Names that Aren't

"Cellar door" ~

. . . apparently the most beautiful combination of words in the English language. There's a bit of disagreement regarding to whom the cellar door meme should be attributed, but apparently it's been coined and re~coined and studied and re~studied by influential writers including fantasy writer J. R. R. Tolkien and poet/writer/literary critic Edgar Allan Poe. {The repetition of "nevermore" in The Raven is supposedly inspired by admiration for the euphony of "cellar door".} Most recently, in the "On Language" column in the New York Times, Grant Barrett studies the cellar door meme.

:: Cellar door ::

Does it sound beautiful to you? Can you disregard the meaning that our language attributes to these mere sounds?

Phonaesthetics is the study of the inherent beauty OR unpleasantness of the sounds of certain words; euphony, being pleasant, and cacaphony, being unpleasant.

I must confess, I listen in everyday conversation for words that are phonaesthetically pleasing and amuse myself by imagining that these words could function as names for people.

Thinking of such words as names is amusing only because it IS so difficult to dissociate the word from its meaning. However, if I'm successful in thinking of these words as just combinations of various sounds, I can think, "Hmmm. . .this does actually sound like a name!!"

Here is my list of baby names that, well. . .aren't:

  • Camera
  • Ecstasy
  • Calorie
  • Debris
  • Celery
  • Lasagna
  • Malaria
  • Memory
  • Apathy
  • Vanity
  • Chlamydia
  • Witness
  • Limber
  • Canister
  • Mascara
  • Tendril
  • Militia
  • Dijon

Do you have any suggestions for additions to my "could be names if only they didn't mean that" list??

I realize that this is a strange subject, but it's one of many results of my love of language. : )

Monday, August 16, 2010

Miscellany Monday ::: Little People Edition

Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters

::You scared me, Peanut::

It absolutely freaks me out when people sleep with their eyes open. Today this sweet little gem fell asleep with his peepers unclosed.

His eyes were almost completely open; I could even see him going cross-eyed. He would occasionally turn to look at me and make his eyes into tiny slits. Was he really asleep? Was he pretending? Then he stopped moving, his little body just still, his eyes staring ahead unfocused. I had stared at him for so long that my eyes began to play tricks on me, and I thought he had stopped breathing. My blood turned cold. I called his name just like the frantic people in the movies do, and I checked his vitals.

Of course I was flipping out over nothing, but in that moment I was convinced something was really wrong with him! He was fine and breathing well, but I called over the other teacher to confirm that Peanut was indeed just sleeping. : )


I'm still counting my endless gifts as part of a community of gratitude at Holy Experience. Check out my latest list addition to find out what one two year~old saw when he spotted this paint splatter on the floor:

::Watch out Tyra Banks::

I don't know about you, but I don't look this cute right after I wake up:

Miss Photogenic, even though you're prone to going crazy and having epic meltdowns, the two year~old class just wouldn't be the same without you. You're spunky, witty, quick...and just plain cute! : )

Link up with your own miscellany over at lowercase letters!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Endless Gifts |80~88|

On the days when the curses seem to outnumber the blessings, on the days when the butterflies are smashed on the highways, I keep counting to keep my sanity. . .

Even when I can only think of 8.

:: opportunity to continue my education, and thereby achieve my career dreams

:: meeting new people

:: identifying shapes with little ones.."Das a hoowwut." {That's a heart.}

:: having a girl talk fest with a co-worker during naptime

:: realizing that my difficult experiences, though specific, are also universal

:: "Hi Miss Leah!!!!!" greetings and running to the playground fence when I arrive

:: beauty from the ashes, a harvest from the barren

:: viewing the world through untainted, innocent eyes:

Pointing to a paint splatter on the ground, Cherub lets out an exclamation. What do you think he saw?

"That's blues clues!!" Do you see it?

May I continue counting forever these forever gifts, missing none, giving thanks for each and every.

holy experience

Friday, August 13, 2010

Shots of Amnesia

Disclaimer #1: I don’t intentionally wish to be depressing; however, if you’re in particular need of an uplifting, “rainbows and butterflies” blog entry, today may not be the day to read this post.

Disclaimer #2: Drinking and drug paraphernalia are mentioned. Now, before you go calling Dr. Drew on me, I have no substance abuse issues; such phrases are merely symbolic and indicative of raw emotion.

Disclaimer #3: The following reads as a rap/spoken word. I’m an expert in neither

Light me up, fill my cup

With shots of amnesia.
Give me a hit, so I can forget
The plagues of this season.

Squirt lemon sour, on the rocks by the hour
This potion’s sure to ease the
Pain of betrayal, heart pierced with nails
Loose the chains that have seized ya.

Just to know the truth, recover my youth
And from these lies be freed up,
Start again, forget where I’ve been
With shots of amnesia.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Miscellany Monday

Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters

{1} With less self control, I would be bald.
Today was one of THOSE days. You know the ones. Especially if you spend any length of time around small children regularly. I gush about my job so often on this blog that it probably seems like it doesn't ever challenge me. Ha! By the time 5 year~old Pixie threw mulch at me, deliberately disobeyed consistently with an apathetic expression painted on her face, ran out of timeout 7 times, and told me flippantly, "Yeah..well..I've already heard all this before...so..." as I was explaining to her why she had to stand out, I was ready to pull my hair out! And that was only in the morning. And an encounter with only one child. Today the Pre~K had 16 high~energy, disobedient, naughty attention~seeking children.

{2} Watching their quest for love.
The Bachelorette finale aired last Monday night. What am I going to do with my Monday nights now that it's over? Oh yeah! The Bachelor Pad! Some of my favorite former Bachelor and Bachelorette contestants are coming back for another shot at love {plus there's a money component..hmmm}. The Bachelor Pad premieres tonight at 8 Est. on ABC.

{3} Enhancing the peeper fringe.
Many of you already know that I'm a mascara junkie. I feel like my current mascara is causing me to have a lot of breakage, so I'm in the market for a new one. Any suggestions for a mascara that gives great length and volume and doesn't seem to cause breakage?

{4} Back to lowercase.
I was pushing Carrot Top on the swings today when she began to slow down while I pushed some other children. She reacted to her slowing swing by saying, "Miss Leah, I need another push! I'm back to lowercase!" This was quite an interesting way to describe her position in relation to the ground {as opposed to swinging HIGH and UPPERCASE/CAPITAL LETTERS.} This is also a perfect shout~out to the fabulous Miscellany Monday host blog, lowercase letters! : )

Head over there and link up your own miscellany!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Saturday Evening Blog Post {July}

I'm linking up once again with Elizabeth Esther's Saturday Evening Blog Post. Today we're sharing our favorite posts from July 2010. I entered my Nuturer by Nature post. Select your fave from your July archives and link up!!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Counting the Endless Gifts :|61~80|:

Counting the extraordinary embedded in the ordinary...

{61} torrents that break the heat

{62} fifty years

{63} saying and meaning "I do"

{64} love and commitment

{65} memories

{66} doting grandparents, then and now

{67} anniversaries

{68} camera shy cousins

{69} pushing price~tagged Bethy on her swing

{70} little legs braced straight

{71} pink ball cap askew
{72} toddler noodle sucker/slurper

{73} back patio bbqs

{74} vegetarian picnic food {for yours truly}

{75} purple icing on sticky fingers

{76} being dubbed "Miss Big Leah"..to distinguish from 3 year~old student with the same name

{77} beautiful, goofy smiles

{78} asked if I'm a child or a mommy; and if neither, "Then what are you??"

{79} Miss Picasso's heartfelt morning hug and "MY Miss Leah!"

{80} "MY Miss Leah" retort from Cheerleader

holy experience

The ~Wipers~ of Blessing

This verse snippet comes from a passage in Isaiah in which captive Israel is being informed of many messages from God of redemption and promise.

"If you had listened all along to what I told you, your life would have flowed full like a river, blessings rolling in like waves from the sea."
~Isaiah 48:18 {The Msg.}

I pray that we can LISTEN in all the ways God is speaking, teaching us to live right and well. Listen through the Word, through other people, through experiences, through heartache, through unspeakable joy, so that our lives may be blessed and full as He intended.

Teach me Your way so that I can be deluged with the waves of Your redemptive fullness...

holy experience