Monday Mayhem

Sorry for no post yesterday. It was an interesting day. Met up with some old running buddies for a walk and then was supposed to go for breakfast. We waited for an hour at our favourite restaurant, but ended up walking across to Tim Hortons where I got to watch everyone else eat as there was nothing I could eat:(. I then came home and read like crazy to finish Circe by Madeline Miller for Bookclub. I finished it at 3:40 and Bookclub starts at 4🤣. Bookclub was great as we watched the Oscars, though I have to admit that I was disappointed that Parasite won for best picture. I really didn’t like that movie!

On to today…

Exercise:

I was crazy enough to get up early for a workout with L. It’s always tough to get up, but I feel so great afterwards. There was already someone on the treadmill so we did our floor work first and it was all about the bosu. It’s amazing how much intensity it adds to not be stable. We did raises, hip dip planks, sit ups, Superman’s and lunges on it and boy was it tough!

We then did a run on the treadmill that had me going up to 9% incline. I really don’t like hills! It felt good to get it done though!

Teaching:

It was a crazy day. It started with a bobcat sighting on the grounds so they brought all the children and parents into the gym early. All ya teachers wondered why as what bobcat is going to be crazy enough to come near 223 screaming children????

We tried to get all our morning jobs done, but the announcements were early as was the fire drill they threw in for fun. There went my plan:(. Oh of course in the middle of this we were short two EAs so my EA wasn’t always with my low functioning autistic boy which meant I had him and twenty one other children all on my own☹️

Oh and we were also celebrating 100 day so this morning we took a few moments to arrange our collections of 100 objects a few different ways and then after recess we made a class book and then traded classes with the kindergarten teachers and made the books with those classes too. It was a great idea as we got to see what’s coming up next year.

This afternoon we continued the pandemonium by starting a polar bear research project with the children. At the end of the day, we celebrated surviving with 9 minutes of playtime outside.

Oh my…. I hope the week calms down!!!

Knitting:

I have been sitting here knitting on a seed stitch toque and I think I may just head off to bed!

Have fun!

AJ

Solid Saturday

It was a pretty good day. I got to do things I enjoy, but I had to do certain things which does take some of the fun away.

Exercise:

Dennis and I ran a new route this morning- the Central Valley Greenway. We intercepted it at Sperling and ran the 5.28km to Boundary and back. This is an urban trail that only has one section of packed gravel and the rest is paved. I don’t think I would run it alone as it runs behind buildings and through industrial parks. Dennis thinks it probably gets pretty busy on summer nights and we probably passed twenty people during the 10km we did, but still seems secluded to me.

My legs were tight the whole time and my left Achilles was bugging me. At four km I was ready to say, let’s go find a skytrain station and go home, but good running buddy that he is, Dennis kept me going. I had done a workout last night instead of a run, but maybe my legs would be better if I reversed those two?

We did the whole 10.04km and I had a personal best with doing it in 1:05:21, that is down from 1:07.

This evening I did a hallmark workout as I am trying to keep my workouts and my runs equal.

I decided to jog between moves and did: squats, crunches, reverse crunches, front, side and back raises, froggers, burpees, bicep curls, around the world lunges, plié squats, pushups, and dips.

I hope one day that these workouts pay off!

Knitting:

After coffee, I came home and started the toque I am making for the secretary’s daughter. It’s an easy knit as it’s done in seed stitch which is one of my favourite stitches. Right now, I’m just worried that the yarn is going to be too dense to slouch, but I suppose we shall see.

Reading:

I have spent a lot of today reading my Bookclub book. I am almost halfway which is probably the best I can hope for as the book is 579 pages long. I am making this post short so I can get back to it.

Cooking:

I made my second Fresh Prep meal today which was Hoisin meatballs with broccoli and coconut rice. This recipe took me 32 minutes from turning the stove on to taking my first bite. It would have been less if I had remembered to take the ground pork out to de thaw and hadn’t had to take the 2.5 minutes to microwave defrost it in the middle. The recipe was easy to follow and simple to do. With both of these recipes I have felt that I could probably memorize the recipe if I made it a couple of more times. I also got four servings out of this recipe too so I should have plenty to get me through until the next two meals show up on Wednesday. I would like to get to the point where I can get six servings out of each meal as then I could freeze a couple and build my stash back up as my freezer is very empty right now.

Eating:

I have eaten really well today! I had a bag of honey stinger chews on my run as I was trying to give myself energy. I had a serving of my shrimp pad Thai for breakfast, and then taco salad for launch and then the meatballs and rice and broccoli for dinner. I wasn’t planning on the last meal, but realized later in the day that I needed to get that meal cooked up.

Well that is my whole day and I need to go read my book.

Have fun!

AJ

Grateful Sunday

It was a pretty nice day all around, though it still feels like work to breathe.

Exercise:

I got out for a run with Dennis this morning while Brenda and James walked. We were supposed to do 10km but we got talking and didn’t start running right away so it ended up being 7.3km. I am just fine with that. Neither Dennis nor I can figure out why we were slower this morning, but we were. Maybe I spent too much time admiring the sunrise.

This afternoon I got another Hallmark movie workout done. I changed it up so that each movie item coincided with two exercises.

I ended up doing:

30 crunches and 30 reverse crunches

10 jacks and 10 cross jacks

15 burpees and 15 mountain climbers each side

15 squats and 15 deep squats

5 plié squats and 5 pulsing squats

15 curtsy lunges each side and 15 lateral lunges each side

In between each of these I put a minute of with jogging or skaters.

I think I’m liking these workouts because every one is different, though I realize I’m not going to build much muscle with them. Oh well, at least I’m moving a bit.

I’m grateful for the beautiful place I live in and the many outdoor places I have available to run. I’m grateful for running buddies who keep me going and make me laugh even when I’m dying. I’m also grateful for the body that allows me to do all these things.

Cooking:

I made a gluten free, dairy free trifle today. I did Schar gf/df ladyfingers, a layer of raspberries, then a layer of chocolate pudding made with almond milk, then a layer of So Delicious Coco Whip. I then repeated them all again and topped it with more fresh raspberries. It was very delicious and went over well at Bookclub.

I’m grateful that I love to spend time in the kitchen and that there are becoming more options for me all the time. I’m also grateful to have a grocery store that carries lots of allergy free options. I’m grateful for the Bookclub girls who willingly eat what I make and provide so many laughs:)

Reading:

I finished the kids Bookclub book today, Turtle in Paradise by Jennifer Holm. This was such a great book! It is about Turtle, a little girl who has to go live with her aunt in Key West during the depression. It was fast paced, the characters were awesome and it made the depression really understandable for kids. It’s told from the perspective of Turtle and so from a kids perspective. I would highly recommend this book and In fact, I’ve read Holm’s other book The Thirteenth Goldfish and loved it too.

I’m grateful for wonderful authors and for getting to share books with the older kids at school.

Movies:

My Christmas movie for today was Pride, Prejudice and Mistletoe. It was super cute, though perhaps a little tough to tell who was supposed to be who at times. I think I have it straight now, but who knows. As a cute Christmas movie it was entertaining:)

I’m grateful that there must be other people who like these movies like I do so Hallmark keeps making them:)

Bookclub:

We had our Christmas meeting of Bookclub today. This is the time when we choose our books for next year. It was better this time than last, perhaps because here were six of us and so the new girl didn’t get to talk continuously! None of my books were chosen for next year, but that’s okay. I will probably still read them myself:)

Well I have to get to bed.

Have fun!

AJ

Quiet and Bookclub

It was a pretty quiet day but still nice as I had my mom for company.

Exercise:

I met up with the group for a run this morning and ended up doing circles around Brenda as otherwise she would have been on her own. I still got 4.5km in and had a nice visit. I’m happy it was a bit more as that gives me a little cushion this week.

Shopping:

I stopped on the way home at Costco and couldn’t believe how busy it was already when it had only been open for a few minutes! I guess it’s never quiet. I grabbed a new planner as it was driving me nuts to not have one!

Knitting:

Still just doing stockinette in the round on the Not a Boring Sweater.

Baking:

I had Bookclub tonight and plums were mentioned in the book we read so I did a plum upside down cake. It turned out tasty but not pretty as the batter went below the plums so they ended up being in the middle:(

Reading:

This morning I finished the book for Bookclub. It was How to Stop Time by Matt Haig. I really enjoyed this book as it’s about a group of people who don’t age as quickly as others and so end up living hundreds of years. I guess the history geek in me liked all the historical aspects and I liked the premise of being able to see what happens to the world over a long period of time. A lot of the women in Bookclub didn’t love it as they wanted more action or felt that he was a whiny main character. I would recommend it if you like history:)

Bookclub:

Bookclub was fun as always and really great to see everyone as I think I missed the last one. I’m glad it didn’t go late though as I was tired driving there and home!

It’s always a feast at Bookclub!

Well I have ten minutes to knit another row before bed.

Have fun!

AJ

Understanding Groups

Quite a nice day and I got more done than I was expecting!

Exercise:

I couldn’t decide this morning if I’d go out for a run or not as my regular Sunday group was cancelled. I ended up doing a short run to meet the group for coffee. It will ruin the goal I made not to have and 2km runs this month, but that first sip of tea made it worthwhile and the company was also worth it!

Otherwise it was a light exercise day with just 200 squats and 100 crunches.

Cooking:

It was my day to do food prep and boy did I go for pretty! I have fruit and yogurt parfaits for recess snacks that are actually layered prettily! I have vegetable sticks wrapped in ham or chicken and tied with a green onion for lunch ( ham slices work better than chicken), and then I have roasted vegetables with Greek seasoning and veta for dinner. I’m happy I’m prepped with meals that are fruit or vegetable based with the carbs and protein in supporting roles:). I hope this leads to a successful eating week!

I also got cornbread made for Bookclub from Living Freely Gluten Free. This is definitely another successful new recipe as I had a lot of compliments on it at Bookclub. It goes really well with baked beans!

Reading:

I spent much of the afternoon engrossed in Becoming by Michelle Obama again. Tonight I found out we’re not discussing this book until October! I’m never going to remember a thing!

Bookclub:

It was once again Bookclub and it was as wonderful as ever! We had seven people tonight and we talked about the book a little bit; most didn’t love it☹️, but mainly we watched the Oscars and ate. This is the food except for the great baked beans that were done in an Instant Pot and the amazing desserts of Apple Slump and macarons. I bought the macarons from Kizzy’s macarons at the Farmers Market ( I finally got there), and they were wonderful!!!!!

We’ve decided that next year we’ll have to read something connected to Hollywood so we have an excuse to watch the Oscars at Bookclub.

All I have to say about the oscars is that Melissa McCarthy’s dress was crazy and phenomenal, I’m glad that Green Book won for best picture as my friends have all been raving about it, and does Julia Roberts ever age?

I realized today that the groups I belong to are all very understanding, accepting and supportive. These three words describe the teachers in my wing at school, my Squad Runner team, and my Bookclub. I’m glad to have all of these groups in my life:)

Well, I need sleep!

Have fun!

AJ

Plan, Prep, Prep

It was a busy day, but pretty good overall.

Teaching:

Today got off on a weird start as I had a note in a student planner from one of my previous students. It just seems so weird, she is now old enough to be taking the mom role on the house as I remember her in grade one!

This morning we had some fun with story elements. After reviewing characters, setting, problem and solution. We wrote stories with a beginning, middle and end. However, we did these stories how my Nan used to play a game. Each student wrote on a piece of paper, “Once there was a —- who lived in —-“. They then folded the paper back and I redistributed the papers to a new person. Each student then wrote, “one day (and a problem)” on their new sheet. The papers were folded and changed hands again and the students wrote, “suddenly (and a solution”. We collected the papers up and read them out. They were certainly entertained by the zany stories. Some examples:

Once upon a time there was an army man who lived in a tent. One day he got lost in the deep sea. Suddenly the ball went into the net.

Once upon a time there was a penguin who lived on a rainbow. One day he got lost. Suddenly they found Santa Claus.

Once upon a time there was a princess who lived in a castle. One day they forgot to go shopping. Suddenly everything went back to normal.

All of the stories were crazy and made no sense, but they just made the children laugh harder. I don’t think they’ll forget the parts of a story any time soon!

We also did some storytelling for math. I have found my students are much more engaged when the addition story problems feature themselves, so we did a few more practice stories before our worksheet. We had skateboarding, hockey, beyblades and one little girl requested it be about her family. Awwww!

This afternoon we tackled the penguin research again and it went well again. Telling the students that their work can’t be marked unless they come up with their partner really seems to have helped the partner work in the room. That is one of our goals this term.

Reading:

Finally after work, I went to the kids Bookclub. I was super excited about this one as it was on Artemis Fowl and I picked that book. We had a really good mix of people who loved it, liked it and didn’t like it. There were 18 students there today and we had good discussion!

It was back to prep for next week once Bookclub was over, though it did make for a nice break!

At home, I have started the book, One Plus One by Jojo Moyes. I’ll let you know what I think when I get further along. It’s difficult to tell how far I am as it’s a large print edition.

Exercise:

I knew there was no way I would be doing 9km tonight which was the Squad Runner mission, so I just went out for my usual around the park run. It was a nice run and I’m definitely happy with my times! 6:48, 6:51, 6:46,6:29, 6:58. It really seems to be helping that I start running before pressing start on my app. I can’t wait to see if I can push myself to be faster once the ice is gone!

This is where I ran in daylight, though today I ran in the dark:( There were still lots of people out though!

I also got my 200 banded squats, 50 bicycles and 50 leg drops done this evening:). I feel like this may be contributing to my faster speeds so want to keep it up!

Knitting:

I am working on some kid hand warmers to fulfill a class in HPKCHC. I’m hoping to see some cute hearts into them.

Well I’m going to go crawl into bed!

Have fun!

AJ

Who Knew?

Who knew that bookclub could knock a person out?!

Exercise:

Yesterday morning started with my usual Sunday morning run club. We did a regular park route and I felt like I was running fast, but I definitely wasn’t:(  Oh well, I got out and I ran so that’s what really matters. I actually ended up running again in the early afternoon as my running buddies weren’t willing to do an hour in the pouring rain.  The afternoon run went way better, but was still on the slow side. It is weird that for the past two runs, my phone has acted weird at the end and shut itself off, even though it wasn’t out of battery. I wonder if this is it’s formal complaint about running in the cold and wet?

Reading:

I finished the next book in the Return of the Blackwell Brothers Series. This one, The Rancher’s Fake Fiance by Amy Vastine is the fourth in the series and tells the story of Tyler, the second to last Blackwell brother.  Tyler has no interest in the ranch, but promises his employee Hadley a promotion if she will accompany him to the ranch and pretend to be his fiance, so that his brother’s don’t find out he lied about being engaged.

I really liked how the relationship between Hadley and Tyler started out in Portland as it seemed super realistic and made for a nice contrast to how they end up.  I have to say, the whole Portland scene was very realistic and charming too:)

The other part that I really liked about this book was that the Blackwell family played a bigger part.  Ethan and Grace are around in every chapter and Ben and Jon pop in and out too. I really enjoyed the family lunch they all had. It’s about time that family started spending time together!

I can’t wait to see how this series ends with the next book which I will hopefully be starting tonight!

Thank you to Amy Vastine and the publisher for the free copy in exchange for an honest review.

Cooking:

I had a really tough time coming up with what to make for book club because Malin (an amazing cook in the group) beat me to posting what she was making – lemon cake and Christmas cookies. Well there went my plan for brownies and Christmas cookies. I am definitely more known for my baking than my cooking.  I have been craving cream of mushroom soup and haven’t found a vegan version at the store, so I got busy making that. I used this recipe. It was super easy and very yummy! It will definitely become part of the dinner rotation during these cold, wet months!  I also made up a loaf of Bob’s Redmill Bread and it was a hit.

Bookclub:

I, of course, ate way too much at bookclub, but it was just all so good! Between good food, good friends and a cute baby, it was a great night! We actually didn’t end up discussing a book because only one person completely finished it and two of us got partially through it. We did choose our books for next year though:)  We used to choose the next book each time we met, but it wasn’t very time efficient so now we choose six books for the year at our December meeting. I have to remember to walk over to the library and get the book for February as I am hosting that  month so I’d better make sure I’ve read the book!

I came home from bookclub and immediately crashed into bed!

Have fun!

AJ