Fantastic Bake Along- Ode to Chocolate

It was not the day I was expecting, but still quite nice:)

Reading:

I wasn’t expecting to, but have spent much of the day reading Longbourne by Jo Baker. I think I’ll be done by tomorrow. It is a great read so far. I’m loving the different perspective on the characters from Pride and Prejudice!

Exercise:

I usually get up and run first thing Saturday morning, but there was a skiff of snow and it was pouring so I delayed. I was feeling quite guilty by 11am when I was still in my jammies. I did get out for a run at lunchtime when the sun came out for a bit. A beautiful run was spoiled by Runkeeper malfunctioning again. It kept losing the GPS signal and said I was doing a kilometre in 2:44, yeah right! I ended up deleting the run when I got back and just manually entered the distance. Thankfully I had done my usual park run!

The funniest thing about this run was when this song about the constitution came on. Obviously Spotify is celebrating President’s Day. I’m Canadian, I don’t need to hear this!

My Polar Loop activity tracker forced me out on a walk this afternoon. It was enjoyable until I got my phone out to take a photo to share with you all and my phone died. I had to walk home with no music:(. It was funny though to see a guy in a tux out walking a dog. My mind immediately questioned whether he had taken the dog to the wedding with him or rushed home between the ceremony and reception? He definitely lent some class to the inlet trail 🤣. I was hoping to run across him, but we walked parallel the whole time.

I also got a Lyndsay workout done this evening. It was an integrated abs workout and it almost killed me! A warm up, two sets of twelve exercises with each performed for 50 seconds, then a cardio blast of five exercises for 30 seconds, repeated twice and finally an overload of eight exercises performed for 30 seconds each. Amazingly with all of this, my activity timer still says I haven’t made my goal. Maybe it has to fit tight to my wrist to work properly?

Cooking:

I had asked for a fish tacos recipe and Regina Mary came through with one for me. Of course, being me, I messed up and only printed the first page, the ingredients so I somewhat had to make it up as I went along, but it was yummy and had a kick to it:) In fact it was so yummy that there is no pictorial evidence as I had eaten all before I thought to take a picture🤣

Knitting:

I have only managed two more rows on my sweater today and I ended up having to redo one of them. I’m a little disappointed to see that the bottom edge rolls because it’s just stockinette stitch. I checked and there doesn’t seem to be an edging applied to this area:( Hmmm maybe tomorrow I’ll do more.

Baking:

The only other thing I have accomplished today, well other than laundry, is baking. I’m participating in the Fantastic Bake Along again this month which had perfect timing as bookclub is tomorrow!Tracy at It’s a T Sweets Day hosts the bake along and this morning she wrote about her best brownie recipe. I immediately hauled out all my cookbooks and started looking for a chocolate recipe I wanted to make. I don’t really like chocolate so I don’t have a go-to recipe. I unfortunately got super overwhelmed and couldn’t decide on anything:(. I asked Tracy and she said it was okay for me to make her brownie recipe and just alter it to be gluten free and dairy free, so that’s what I did:)

Tyler Brownies (gf/df version)

1 cup Earth Balance vegan butter spread

2 cups white sugar

3 eggs

5 tbsp cocoa

1 tsp vanilla

1/4 cup potato starch

1/4 cup arrowroot starch

1/4 cup mullet flour

1/4 cup buckwheat flour

1/4 cup sorghum flour

1/4 cup oat flour

1 tsp xantham gum

I used my kitchenaid mixer and combined everything together. I lined my very old 8×8 pan with parchment paper and spread the batter evenly. It looked light brown just as Tracy said it should. I ended up cooking my brownies at 350 for 48 minutes and I think they still needed longer:(. They are very fudgy:(. Hopefully the women at book club will like them. They do taste good!They just didn’t hold together that well for me.

Unfortunately I’m on my phone so I can’t provide links to all the other amazing bloggers who participate in the Fantastic Bake Along (if there’s a way, please let me know), but please go to Tracy’s post and check them all out!!!

I also ended up baking up the rest of the cookie dough I had bought last week.

Finally I took some of the brownie parts that had crumbled and have made them into cake pops, but I haven’t quite finished so I’ll have to share them tomorrow.

Well I’m back to Longbourne now!

Have fun!

AJ

Progress

Another long day, but a couple of steps forward.

Blogging:

Wow! I have more than 500 followers as of today! It blows me away. Thanks for reading and commenting everyone! You’ve been a big help many times:)

Reading:

It was really tough to stop reading last night and I put my time before school to use reading again this morning. I finished the novella,Medal Up I got from Net Galley.

This book contains two novellas set at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Korea.

The first story is about Arielle, a figure skater and Brady a snowboarder who used to be a figure skater. I really loved the pacing of this story. It was realistic and moved the story along appropriately. The characters were realistic and interesting, and it really felt to like they belonged together. Finally the sequence of events felt reasonable for athletes at the Olympics.

The second story tells of Maybelle and Bohdan’s relationship. They have been pairs figure skating partners for months, but are really no closer to knowing each other than they were the first day.

This story had a faster pace, but I really liked how the story concentrated mainly on the emotion within the relationship. The characters and situations were again realistic and these were also heart warming as the characters got to know each other and found they had more things in common than they thought.

One of the best parts of this duology is how well the two stories work together. The first story introduces all the characters and the friendship problem/situation that needs resolution carries through both stories seamlessly, almost as though one author had written both. Flockton and Marsden have done a fabulous job providing readers with realistic entertaining Olympic stories.

I reviewed it on both Goodreads, Amazon and here so hopefully I will be approved for something else soon! I really enjoyed this book and it was perfect timing as a pivotal moment in the first story happens on Valentines Day and that’s when I read it:)Until I hear something I am back to a book I’ve been meaning to read forever, Longbourn by Jo Baker. I’m a huge Jane Austen fan and often read the spinoff stories. I’ve heard lots of good reviews of this book written about the domestic help of the Bennet family. I’m only one chapter in and am already enjoying it:)Teaching:Today was a busy day as we had to plan before school and then prep in any free moments and then write three report cards after we finished the prep after school. All of this other stuff would be fine if I wasn’t expected to teach! Of course, all I feel like I’m doing right now is assessing the poor children to death for these report cards! I do wish we could move to having three conversations with parents a year! By the time they get these report cards they are out of date:(We did Writer’s Workshop and a little math today along with computers. The highlight of the day was the Rocks and Rings program which teaches the children about curling. Very cool! Finally a sport I know something about!Exercise:Tonight I had Athletic Yoga which was quite the challenge. Another instructor sat in and it was like our instructor went into overdrive because she was there. In the hour there was only one water break! It was a challenge, but in a good way. I can tell you I don’t love running on gliders though! My poor hamstrings!Knitting:Well I haven’t touched my sweater today:( I did get my Olympics Bootcamp from yesterday to count for the Headmistress’ challenge on HPKCHC! I really need to get going though as I only have 13 days left to get this sweater done!Well I’m tired so I think I’ll just take my book to bed.Have fun!AJ

A Long Day

I have literally just walked in the door after leaving for work at 7:30 this morning:(. I am seriously ready for my bed!

Teaching:

The children actually did pretty good for the double excitement of Valentine’s Day and snow!! We didn’t do much work, just a self assessment this morning that I’ll use for the report cards, but we had no major meltdowns or problems, so I count the day as a success! I got a lot of I love you’s and Happy Valentines Day wishes from my students:)

In the middle of the day we made Cupid’s bow and arrows with our buddies out of popsicle sticks, dental floss and q-tips. I think there’s going to be a lot of requests for these supplies at home as the kids really loved it!

This afternoon we took it easy with a Charlie Brown Valentine Movie. I prefer movies over parties with the children as they are already getting enough sweets and are excited enough already. The children seemed to enjoy the day 👍🏻

It was a late night at work though as my co-teacher and I stayed and got two report cards done. The first two are always the most difficult so it took us about forty five minutes to write each of them:(

At least I had a nice view coming home.

Exercise:

I completed the 2018 Winter Bootcamp Olympics today! 🤣 Lyndsay had some fun with our bootcamp this afternoon, and boy was it tough! There is no way I will ever be an Olympic athlete!!! I don’t think she left any muscle untouched in my body!

Family:

I had no real plans for Valentines Day and I am very proud that I gave away most of the chocolates I was given and then I took the rest of the chocolates and candies to my nephew this evening. It was nice to see him and I got a hug from my brother and my nephew so that was great! It was great to see all of them!

I continued out to Costco and got gas, picked up a package that came for me and grabbed some groceries. If anyone has a recipe for fish tacos they’d like to share, I’d love to hear it!

Blogging:

A few weeks ago I was given more chocolate tea ( really not to my taste) and Stefanie of Wooly Cakes and Wooden Spoons has said she would swap it with me for some Lemon Loaf tea:). Well I got completely spoiled! Not only did I get the tea, I got a beautiful bag, a fitness journal and some yarn along with it!! I will be enjoying all of these things very quickly! Thank you again Stef, it was definitely the best part of my day!!!

Well I think I’m going to go do one row on my sweater and then curl up in bed with my book.

Have fun!

AJ

Uh oh

The last words you want to hear when you come into your classroom after lunch!

Teaching:

We again didn’t get much work done today:( We watched a play this morning called Not So Dumb by Green-thumb Theatre.

I had really high hopes for this play as it was supposed to be about the fact that everyone is smart in some way, even people with a learning disability. Unfortunately the non examples, cruel teasing, physical fighting and mean names, was emphasized a lot more than the good message and how we should treat each other wasn’t touched on at all:(. It also was definitely more appropriate for the older children than for my little ones:(

We wrote about this presentation in the afternoon, our one piece of work today, but the children didn’t really have a lot to say about it.

We had an awesome time with our buddies today! We started in the gym with the big buddies guiding us through the ABC Fit Test and a couple of dances. Boy we’re there red cheeks by the end! We wanted to do a valentines project, but the supplies weren’t quite ready so that will be next week!

I returned from lunch to a closed door which I thought was very odd! It turned out that one of the boys, while depositing his toys back into toy storage, tripped and managed to knock a tray off the counter and break my teapot and spoon rest, both gifts from previous students:( Thankfully nobody was hurt, but I’m going to miss having those things at school!

Baking:

I left the pie on my colleagues desk this morning. She thanked me and then brought the pie in for everyone to enjoy at recess break. Everyone liked it so I can recommend the recipe Raspberry Pie 1 on Allrecipes.com. It was super good!!!😀

Photo Project:

I got home very late because we had an interminable staff meeting tonight. I wanted to get “finish labelling trip photos” off my to-do list so I sat down and did the 111 photos I had left. Now I just have to decide if I’m going to let that fulfill my goal or if I’m going to print the rest of my Boston pictures and get those labelled and deleted this month too.

Knitting:

I finished my first project of the month today. It fulfills a HPKCHC class and will be a gift for my friend’s new baby. It was a very simple baby sweater made with bulky yarn.

It uses the pattern Chunky Alpaca Baby Jacket which is free on Ravelry or can be found here.

I followed the instructions for the most part though I made the sleeves longer and put actual buttons (cute frogs) for closure rather than just ties. I thought these two changes were warranted by the dark colour and warmth of the yarn I was using. It was a very quick project and probably didn’t take more than two hours:)

I also have managed to stay up to date on my temperature scarf:)

Exercise:

I got a workout in this evening which was definitely necessary to relieve the frustration of the staff meeting. I had to do three sets of each of three circuits.

1) 20 squats, 15 squat jumps, 10 burpees

2) 20 mountain climbers, 15 push-ups, 10 hip bridges

3) 20 alternating lunges, 15 plié squats, 10 calf raises

It finished with a minute each of the following: Russian twists, bicycles, plank and superman.

I finished off with a little more cardio just to round up the time. I definitely liked the last circuit best:)

Reading:

I got another couple of chapters of Wives and Daughters listened to on Librivox as I knitted and did cardio. I also have picked up a chick lit novel to read next. I hope it’s good!

Well I’m going to try and get to sleep now to make up for the lack of sleep Saturday night!

Have fun!

AJ

Knit Night Got Me Through It

I woke up this morning just dragging:(. All I could think all day was, “it’s almost knit night”.

Teaching:

I have to show off the math my grade ones do. During calendar each morning the students have to come up with ways to make the number of days we’ve been in school. I’m not sure if I’m just not remembering or if these students really are slightly advanced in math. It seems like they do more difficult equations than I’ve had in the past!

This morning, the two grade one classes did Writer’s Workshop together. It went amazing! We discussed all the different types of writing you can do; lists, cards, reports, directions, poems, stories, etc. It was so neat to see what each student chose and most of them managed to write more than they did last week!   It was also amazingly quiet for having 41 children in one room!

LOL I had a student get a paper cut today and gave him a bandaid.  It turned out it was a Mickey Mouse bandaid which he showed off to other kids in the class. Well, needless to say, I am cleaned out of bandaids now. It’s amazing how dangerous paper is in my class!

The grade ones again played the clapping game today for a warm up in gym. I learned on Monday that a warmup doesn’t always have to be running. Two girls offered to demonstrate it.We also tackled an animals in winter mini book this afternoon which went surprisingly smoothly. It’s great to see how far my students have come in reading already!

Tea:

My tea today was David’s Tea: The Big Chill. It was actually really good! I didn’t find it to have a super distinctive flavour like my favourite, Forever Nuts, but I also didn’t need to pour it out either.

Exercise:

Today after school I had bootcamp at school. It seemed deadly, but maybe it was just my low energy. There were a lot of new moves though. We did 20 second/ 10 second tabatas of: super narrow & deep single leg lunges, single leg lunge hops, lateral runs through an agility ladder, diamond squats, suicides, plank knee tucks using the sliders, hamstring curls on the stability ball along with a double crunch on the ball, mule kick to frog jump, plank punches, bear walk, ISO squat with an overhead press, single leg press with the band and a lat pull down with the band, star jumps, and crab dips & kicks.

I was definitely working hard, but was disappointed that I just didn’t have any “get up and go” today:(

Knit Night:

I ran home tonight to try and finish tidying my house as Brenda was coming over for knit night. I had a plan for a baby sweater using chunky yarn, but I didn’t have the right size of needles:( Amazing when I have so many pairs of needles. Then I tried to start a cute sweater, but I didn’t have the right size of needles for it either:(. Looks like a trip to my LYS is in store. Let’s just hope I can behave myself this time and stay away from the sale basket!!!I’ve ended up just doing a seed stitch Cowl out of the super bulky yarn as it’s for the third quidditch match in HPKCHC.

Movies:

Brenda brought over the first Harry Potter movie tonight so at least I can now say I’ve seen one! I’ve read all the books eight times, but have never seen any of the movies. We’re going to try and work our way through them over the next eight weeks. I liked the first one as it mainly followed the book:).

Well, that’s all for me today.

Have fun!

AJ

Disappointed

A good day but with a disappointment that was all my own fault.

Teaching:

Today we managed to get things done which felt really good. We did a lesson on counting on. It’s funny how six years are already in habits. We were talking about putting the big number in your head and counting on the smaller number, but I have one little guy who always draws lines for the two numbers and then counts the lines. He was bound and determined to continue this practice, even though its slow!! I laugh how early humans get into ruts. We also did a lesson on hibernation along with a song. I realized I only know the chorus of Alouette🤣

The one thing I did with my class today at the end of the day is that we verbally reviewed all we had learned that day! I think I’ll try to keep it up:)

The only other thing I managed to do today was to spill my water bottle all over my desk. I was glad my phone was still in a ziploc from my run yesterday (even though the staff at work had been bugging me about it), but I can only hope that my work laptop is okay. I guess I’ll find out in the morning:(

Exercise:

After work I did bootcamp. Lyndsay made them 20/10 tabatas again today so that I wouldn’t be late leaving and would get through the entire workout. We did:

Burpees, kneeling rollouts, pull-ups, seated knee tucks, donkey kicks and fire hydrants with an 8lb weight, overhead triceps extensions, lunges on the gliders, frog jumps, pliecalf raises, swimmers, push-ups to plank jacks, one legged lunges, jump squats, and squat walks. At the end Lyndsay said she purposely did supersets. There were times that my legs were screaming- like at the plié calf raises and frog jumps! It’s a good thing though as I’d love to have sleeker inner thighs.

This was my only exercise other than a walk to and from a restaurant of about six blocks each way.

Socializing/ Eating:

I had arranged to have a Dine Out Dinner with two friends tonight. Vancouver has a Dine Out each year where restaurants have set three course meals for either $20,$30 or $40. I had gone through and perused all the menus and given some choices based on dessert selection. If I’m going out for dinner, I want to be able to eat dessert! My friends chose Cibo Trattoria. I carpooled downtown with one friend and we parked at the other friend’s place and then walked from there. It turned out that the menu they advertised was not the same as the one they had. I was expecting to eat cauliflower soup, salmon and a chocolate hazelnut torte. What I got instead was salad, salmon and fruit.Tome this was totally not worth $51.45!!!! It may have been my fault, maybe I misread their codes and thought v stood for vegan, not vegetarian, but one of my friends also remembered things being different or at least labelled differently on the advertised menu:( Oh well, it was still a nice night out midweek, and I suppose it was quite a healthy meal.

Reading:

Last night I finished reading Baby It’s Cold Outside by Kait Nolan. It tells the story of Ivy who is an author of thriller books who has a horrible case of writer’s block. She runs away from her agent and editor to the Misfit Inn (Nolan’s other series). Unfortunately on the way to the Inn she is caught in a freak snowstorm and goes over the side of an embankment. Enter Harrison, a former military man, who is having trouble adjusting to civilian life and letting go of his guilt. He rescues Ivy and things go from there.

I liked how Ivy takes charge of the relationship at several points and doesn’t just wait for Harrison to make the moves. I also liked how the story included some of Kait Nolan’s other characters. The characters seemed deep and realistic.

The pace did seem very quick as by my calculations they were getting close on their third day of knowing each other. As well, I loved how the characters came together, but I wanted more at the end. The story seemed to just stop:(

Anyone who likes a military romance or a strong female lead will enjoy this story!

Today, on my reading lunch hour, (thanks Maureen) I started my next book club book. It’s called Ready Player One and it already has me hooked after 25 minutes of reading:). I’ll tell you all about it when I’m done!

Knitting:

I’m working away on my sweater still. I really wanted to be home working on it tonight as I’m getting close to being done the body:). Soon!

Tea:

I didn’t like my tea today at all so I have blocked the name of it from my mind and it’s just too cold to get out of bed to go look! If it matters to you, ask me in the comments and I’ll look in the morning:)

Well my eyes keep wanting to close so I think I will let them!

Have fun!

AJ

Easing Into It

Not too bad a day:)

Exercise:

I got out of the staff meeting a little early and so got to get home in time for a run:). I was a little slow starting, but just made a 6:58 average when my phone died. I stopped running 😂. I find it so hard to keep running when my phone isn’t recording- does a run count if it’s not recorded??😂

I also got a quick workout in this evening. It was Russian twists, lunges, jump squats, squats, hand release push ups, and sit ups. I had to push it as I ate way too many treats at staff meeting:(

I’m sitting here tonight trying to decide what to do about my exercise tomorrow. I have a massage at 3:30 and usually I try to enjoy my food feeling body for 24 hours with no exercise, but Tuesday night is my run clinic night. Do you see my conundrum? Do I run in the morning and then not run tomorrow night or do I take the day off of exercise or do I have my massage and then run anyways?

Teaching:

I got to the end of the day and realized we had done absolutely no actual work today!!! Oh my! What kind of teacher am I? We had gymnastics first thing, then a fire drill, recess, music class, calendar, lunch, Planners, Silent Reading, and buddies. I suppose I could have had them do a journal after buddies, but getting a six year old to sit down and write at 2pm, yeah right!  We’ll have to make up for this with double the work tomorrow!!!

We had staff meeting after school today which is my least favourite day of the month! I always overeat on the treats because I’m stuck there with nothing to do with my hands other than put food into my mouth:(. The one good thing is that my principal agreed to shorten the eating time and extend the play time during lunch! Those kids need to run more and they’re running amok with too much time in the classroom once they’re finished eating.

Tea:

I had David’s Tea Organic Super Ginger Tea today. I have to admit I didn’t like this tea at all:(. It was too gingery for me. I should have kept it for when I had a gluten or dairy attack as maybe it would settle the stomach, but it was just too strong a ginger taste for me.

Blogging:

Well, I have spent way too much time trying to add a contact me page to my blog. I have watched videos and read how-to’s, but it just keeps saying I need to upgrade to a business account to have a contact me page. If anyone can solve this problem – please tell me!

Eating:

I am probably having so much trouble with this because I am trying to cut down on how much I am eating to get rid of this little extra weight from the holiday. Unfortunately, I get hangry easily so it’s going to be a tough couple of days for me:(

Shopping:

I forgot to tell you all about the cutest bag I saw yesterday. My sister in law says it came in her fab fit fun box. I think I would do anything for that bag:) I have been thinking about getting myself a subscription box. I looked online and there are a ton of them! If anyone has one they like and would recommend, please let me know:)

Reading:

I’m enjoying Baby It’s Cold Outside by Kait Nolan and I’ll tell you all about it when I finish:)

I took Maureen’s advice and read on my lunch hour. My feet were frozen from recess supervision so I put them up on my portable heater and really felt calmed:). I need to do this more often!

My sister in law knows how much I like to cook so she sent me a cookbook suggestion- says it has lots of gluten free and dairy free recipes. I’ll have to see if I can get it from the library first as I like to try a cookbook out before I buy it. It looks good though:) Knitting:

I’m working away on my sweater, hoping to get it done by the end of the month! It’s not much to look at yet, but I’m liking it so far:)

I also got two more yarns entered into my Ravelry stash. I’m continuing to move forward on this even though I know I’ll never get them all in there. I like how when I click a favourite, Ravelry will tell me if I have any yarn that would work for that pattern! That’s enough incentive to keep my plugging away at my stash.

I was knitting on a scarf out of my leftovers at school today during the second half of lunch. Two of the teachers commented on it and said they’d be interested in knitting. Now I just have to figure out how to sell them on the idea of knit night!!!

Movies:

I watched The Perfect Christmas Present tonight which was okay, but the leading lady was annoying to me;(

Well, not a really exciting day, but it’s a Monday survived:)

Have fun!

AJ

A Fun Day

It was a fun day at school and a fun evening so a win-win:)

Exercise:

I got a workout in with Lyndsay after school today. We did the 12 days of Christmas. It was a ladder workout of a plank, burpees, push-ups, star jumps, dips, double crunches, squat jumps, punches, jumping jacks, mountain climbers, superwomen, high knees.  It was quick, but intense. There was a lot of planking in there!

Unfortunately no run for me and probably realistically not another one until Saturday:(

Teaching:

When I came out this morning to get the children, there were only seven in my lineup! Boy would that be a quiet day!  I got up to sixteen eventually, but there were a lot of stories about frozen car doors😂

We took the opportunity of the snowy scenery to go for a nature walk in the forest. It was very cool! We talked about how we know it’s winter, why snow doesn’t melt in some places, and though we didn’t see any birds, we heard a Northern Flicker! The children all seemed to enjoy it:)

We did a lot of reading Charlie and the Chocolate Factory today to get ready for watching the movie tomorrow. We only have five pages left do we’ll get there:)

This afternoon we decorated gingerbread cookies. We had a ton of parent volunteers so it went really well! We did it in the multipurpose room by laying roll paper out on the floor and have kids across from each other. It was so neat to see the different ways children decorated. Some spread icing and then literally dumped every candy they could on top, while others went much more minimalist and carefully. It definitely highlighted the children’s personalities:)

My class gave me a group gift today that was so perfect! I got a David’s Tea classic teas set, a colour changing mug with an included strainer, a beautiful warm scarf in my favourite colour and a gift card!! I was so spoiled!!!! 

Shopping:

I’ve been putting off going to the mall for weeks now, but tonight I went with Lyndsay and it was way more fun to have company! We got Wal Mart, Sephora, Bath and Body Works, London Drugs, Lululemon, and Chapters in two hours!  I got everything I needed to so I’m happy:)

Tea:

It was carrot cupcake tea in my David’s Tea advent calendar today. It is the first tea ever, I think, that I couldn’t drink. It did not taste good to me:(

Christmas:

This evening I have gotten a few of my gifts wrapped up. I’m not giving anything big. It’s a tea hot pad that I sewed along with a couple of tea bsgs and a chocolate. Just a little treat for the people I care about:) I saw the tea hot pads in Maine this summer and thought they were such a good idea. They look like a hot pad, but they have essential oils in them so when you put a hot tea mug on them, they smell good:). I hope everyone can enjoy at least one relaxing moment over the holidays.

Reading:

I’ve been getting a bit more of The Nagic Strings of Frankie Presto read over the last couple of days as I would like to get that and Jane Eyre finished this year!

Well that’s it for me tonight!

Have fun!

AJ

This and That

The weather has changed by the hour today and so have my activities!

Exercise:

On my way to my run this morning it was raining cats and dogs, it was gray when we started and by the end it was beautiful blue sky and sunshine. I was on my own running this morning around Burnaby Lake. It was a wonderful morning though with the frogs croaking audibly and hopping over puddles. Just forty minutes as my body was asking if I was ever sending any oxygen down! A cold and a run don’t always go together but I’m glad I got out for something! I was almost completely under the 7min/km of my goal, but not quite:( The first kilometre did me in at 7:05.

I got a short weight workout in this evening, mainly because I didn’t want to admit I hadn’t. I’m trying to keep the weight training up as I notice right away in my running when I don’t!

Family:

I wasn’t very social during my post run tea today as I was busy booking flights on wifi while I could. It doesn’t sound like my brothers are going to celebrate Christmas together this year and I really don’t want to have to choose between them ( one lives close but the other lives on the island- about three hours and a ferry ride away), so I’m abandoning g both of them and going to visit my parents in Arizona. I really want to celebrate and do Christmas things with my nieces and nephews but I guess it’s just not going to happen:(. I really wasn’t planning on going to Arizona for that long, but the cheapest option was the 24th to the 6th so that’s what I went for.  It will be relaxing and of course nice to see my parents and some sunshine. Of course now that I’ve booked, my brothers will probably plan some great thing. That’s how my life usually goes.  I will be heading to the island to visit my brother and his family this coming weekend and will make sure to visit with my other brother and his family as well, before I go.

Baking:

My co teacher’s husband has been helping me out on a project so I wanted to thank him. A little birdie told me his favourite were oatmeal raisin cookies so I got busy and made some this afternoon, after my lovely nap on the couch. It’s a new recipe for me, so I hope they taste good! I’ll let you know what he says and if they pass I’ll share the recipe:)

Knitting:

I managed to finish up my handwarmers today while I was listening to Jane Eyre on Librivox. I am pretty happy with them and I even have a little yarn left over so I can hopefully turn my beanie into an actual toque!!!

I made up the pattern. I used 3.75mm DPN. It has ten rows of k2,p2 rubbing. 25 rows of stockinette, cast off four stitches in the next row and then cast them back in in the row following that. Stockinette for another ten rows and then ten rows of k2,p2 rubbing again. On the last row, cast off twenty 2/3 of your stitches and knit across the remaining stitches. In the next row, cast back on the stitches. Do 8 rows of ribbing k2,p2, then stockinette stitch for four rows. On the fifth row and every odd row thereafter, k2tog at the start of each of your three needles. When you are down to 8 stitches, break yarn and thread it through the remaining stitches.  Weave in ends and sew on a button to hold mitt when not in use. I used a dragonfly button so a stitch just slips over the tail to hold the mitt back. Otherwise, you’ll need to do a buttonhole at some point.

I thought about using my yarn leftover to knit thumbs, but have decided to leave my thumbs out to use my phone with and to enlarge my hat instead!

Watching:

I have watched four Hallmark movies so far:

A Dash of Love

The Best Christmas Party Ever

At First Bark

Broadcasting Christmas

I have enjoyed all even with the corniness and occasional bad script and acting:) I love them for their feel good vibes:)

Well it’s been a lovely day, but I need sleep to be a nice teacher!

Have fun!

AJ

Not Enough Hours!

A good day, but there are just not enough hours in the day for all the things I want to do!

Exercise:

I got my butt out of bed and went out the door for a run. It was a tough go so I said I’d just do five minutes out and five back, thankfully it turned into my usual run, though I didn’t quite make thirty minutes. I was just glad to get out!

I did the workout Wednesday with the children and then also ran two laps at the start of gym with them. My legs feel very sore though:(

After school we had our staff bootcamp. It was only four of us today so quite quiet. It was lots of cardio today as we did: high knees and v ups, skaters and punch crunches, reverse lunge with lateral raises and donkey kicks, running and leg curls, reverse lunge with a hop and planks, bench lateral step ups and push-ups, side shuffle and plank shoulder taps. It was a good workout, but it’s funny that it felt like working out again when I got home.  On Sunday one of my running buddies was talking about getting addicted to weight training and I said he was crazy, but maybe he’s not.

Teaching:

We had a pretty normal day. We read a friendship book and made connections, did some work with base ten blocks and wrote about our hip hop dancing at the end of October ( I completely forgot about doing hallway writing about it!!). All throughout these activities I was busy getting all the children assessed on math. I really dislike when I have to do these formal assessments as I pretty well have to stop teaching to do them. I film the children in FreshGrade and that means I can’t stop and help or review work with any of the other children. I feel like assessing makes me a bad teacher:(. I think tomorrow we will do tons of game playing to make up for the past two weeks!

I finished my report cards this morning and have switched with Lyndsay for proofreading. I so hadn’t thought about the fact I would actually have to read hers when I suggested this🤣 I also sent mine to my mom to get her to proofread them. She’s an awesome editor and it will make her feel at home 😂. The goal is to hand them in on Friday so I don’t have to think about them this weekend!

Baking:

I made some no-bake cookies tonight. My co-teacher shared her avocado and grapes with me today (she doesn’t think I eat enough) so I want to take something for her tomorrow. The recipe is from here:

http://beamingbaker.com/4-ingredient-no-bake-peanut-butter-coconut-oatmeal-cookies-gluten-free-vegan-dairy-free-4-ingredient-one-bowl/

It was super easy as it only had four ingredients: oats, peanut butter, coconut and maple syrup (though I used agave syrup instead).  I’ll let you know what Liane thinks of them tomorrow:)I think they took me a whole six minutes start to finish though I’m going to leave them in the freezer overnight as they still seem sticky!

I thought Of Maureen tonight as I had a baked potato for dinner. It was yummy ! I never think of having a potato but it was quick, warm and filling- perfect for this cold, rainy night!

I tried a new non dairy egg nog the other day. My friend had mentioned this one before so when I saw it I grabbed it!

It was thicker than the So Delicious one I usually buy but I found it didn’t have the strong egg nog taste I like. If only they could use this texture and the So Delicious taste!  I’ve decided that there will be no more egg nog! No wonder I’m feeling pudgy!

The other news in eating is that I found an aerosol can of rice whipped cream. I was so excited, but the can is broken and I can’t get anything out:( I unfortunately don’t have the bill anymore so I can’t return it. Anyone have any advice for me??? I am so disappointed as I was really looking forward to it as I had read a fellow blogger’s Review!

Knitting:

I have gotten the cuff done on one of my handwarmers but that’s it:(. There are just not enough hours in the day! Today a blogger mentioned taking a holiday day just to crochet. I’ve always wanted to stay home from work for a day just to knit, but unfortunately I just can’t bring myself to do that:(

Well I have to get back to reading Lyndsay’s report cards.

Have fun!

AJ