Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Many the Miles

"There's too many things I haven't done yet.
Too many sunsets,
I haven't seen.

You can't waste the day wishing it'd slow down,
You would've thought by now I would've learned something"

I made up my mind when I was a young girl,
I've been given this one world,
I won't worry it away"

Sara Bareilles
Many the Miles

Friday, October 17, 2008

Proverbs 29:25

For the next two weeks Laura and I will be gallivanting the world popping from one place to the other searching for fun and independence. As excited as I am I can't help but feel a little nervous treading in unknown waters. We are traveling outside English speaking countries and naturally I'm nervous about the language barrier and how to handle scary situations. I found comfort in this verse.

"The fear of man will prove to be a snare: but those who trust in the Lord shall be safe. "

Why should I fear the man who can do no eternal harm?

So for the next two weeks please pray for safe and smooth travel and all that encompasses. period. And get ready for some exciting blog posts with pictures. Because we are going to have the TIME OF OUR LIVES!!

Our itinerary
Sat- Sun EGYPT

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Best School Day...EVER!!

Yesterday was one of my favorite days at school. My school is part of a program called Round Square. This is a separate department within the school that plans activities for the students that include the 5 IDEALS (Internationalism, Democracy, Environment, Adventure, Leadership, Service). For the whole day, my 6th graders got to go on a field trip. Although, this school is so activity oriented that they don't have to go through the same procedures of permission slips and what not. It is pretty much assumed that if you allow your child to go to this school you are giving permission to do fun activities all over. I didnt even know my students were expected to be out for Round Square until two days before!

Anyway, Laura and I tagged along as 2 of four chaperones on this trip. We strapped on our "wellies" and put on our waterproofs" eager and ready for this adventure and it was pretty magnificent. Yeah we just went on a field trip...hiking up a mountain, overlooking the most incredible view of the lake with the mountains behind it, and the leaves turning colors....no big deal.

We first went to this Footprint Building, made out of all renewable, recycled and local resources called the "Footprint" for two reasons. It is shaped like a footprint, but also to remind us about our own carbon footprint on the environment. The children were able to think about their effect on the environment as well as the residents of Windermere. They did a field sketch on top of the mountain of the lakes and I was just taken back. This is what they get to look at everyday. This beautiful, wonder of God! Ugh...Im so jealous! It will be hard to go back to Texas :(

Then they were broken up into groups and participated in a mock city council meeting debating the construction of a train station through Windermere. Each group acted as a different population of Windermere (farmers, tourists, families, celebrities, the elderly) and voted according to what their character would. SO FUN and SO good for them! It really got them thinking about the issues and how to deal with them democratically!

After lunch we went on an adventure tour of the forest where we pulled tiny Beech Tree sprigs from the ground before they get big enough to chop due to overpopulation in the area. Too many Beech Trees reduce the amount of Oak Trees in the area because of their expansive leafs and quick growth rate, leaving fewer Oak Trees and the habitats and insects that come with them.

Then we got our hands dirty and created little habitats out of logs, leaves, twigs, brush, fern...anything and everything. This was a lot of fun and I was working with the perfectionistas who wanted to cover all the holes with mud and leaves, create a veranda, and make a door out of bark.

I love being at a Round Square School where they encourage outside the classroom learning and stopping for a day to do something completely different.
Overall, GREAT DAY!
(Cutest little Sam after pulling out his Beech twigs)

Also today
-our students found out our first names because Laura and I have a hard time calling each other "Ms. Terry and Ms. Anderson" (whoops)
- I answered more questions about America, than I think I ever will
- they think obese people are as common as Mc Donalds
- Brook asked out Emily
- Emily asked Ben to the ball that is in DECEMBER
- the other Emily wants to ask Matt to the ball
- and Ben wants to marry me

Happy Birthday Jessica and Elise

Two of my best friends have birthdays 10 days apart. I will be out of town on Elise's birthday so this post is dedicated to the both of them, even though it is Jessica's birthday today.
Cheers to turning 23 and 9 years of blessed friendship.

Love you Boops....

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

School Videos

Some of my 6th grade students dancing and singing their Science song to High School Musical. A-dorable. 

This is a lesson I did with my 6th grade Math students called Barbie Bungee. I first learned about this lesson last semester in my Methods classes and decided to try it out. It went Brilliantly! This is a video I made as a promotional video that the school used during Open House when trying to recruit prospective students. 
T'was a hit. 

Monday, October 13, 2008

British Hotties FOUND!

If anyone is wondering where all the attractive British men are….the are CONGREGATING in Liverpool by the hundreds!!!! I’m talking left, right, up down. It’s almost like you can’t get away from them. There are a couple Ligers out there so you have to watch out, but if you are just in the mood to window shop, Liverpool is where its at.

This may contribute slightly to my now new obsession with Liverpool. I REALLY liked London but that has fallen to a close second following the hip and trendy Liverpool reigning at first! I just love the feeling of the city. At first I was completely intimidated by it but over the weekend that feeling of uncomfortableness was replaced with an irreplaceable love for the city. It doesn’t feel like a place that has thousands of years of important history because it is masked by the modern feel and architect of it. Maybe the modern-ness is what threw me off.
Anyway, it is by the water, which I love. It is artistic and musical, which I LOVE and it is completely geared towards the young people. I have never seen such a crowd. Beautiful men or not…it was just….fun! By far my new favorite city.

But then again I haven’t been to Cairo, Prague, Amsterdam, Krakow, Berlin, Paris, or Ireland yet.

And they are JUST as obsessed with our accent as we are with theirs ;) it makes for a a good night.


Today I got to do something I never thought I would do. But then again this whole semester has been full of things I never thought I would do. But this weekend went above and beyond. The experiences I am having over here, so far, have been to places I haven’t even thought of going to. Liverpool has always been a city I have wanted to visit.
When I was 14 I fell in love with the Beatles about 40 years too late. I listened to their hit songs on repeat, plastered their posters on my wall and wished I had been born and lived through that era and still do. Being so close to their hometown and not going would feel like betrayal in a way, and I couldn’t let them down as a fan!

(Strawberry Fields)

Booking this weekend was very difficult. Because of those four outstanding artists, Liverpool has become the Capital of Culture and has forever changed image of the city. In addition to the popular futbol team, Liverpool has grown into a breeding ground for fame seeking starving musicians and artists who contribute to the wild young nightlife. It houses many art schools and museums and there is something going on every weekend, hence the difficulty to get a room for this weekend.
We had to book 3 weeks in advance, which only contributed to my heightened anticipation.

IM GOING TO LIVERPOOL! TO see the birthplace of the BEATLES!!!! AHHHHH!
This is as close as I can get to stepping back in time and living my dream as a 1960’s teenager deeply mesmerized
and hypnotized by Beatlemania! I get to walk down the same streets they did, go to the same pubs they played at and even get a glimpse of the homes they grew up in (if I’m lucky).
The Beatles Story Museum is absolutely incredible. It gives you everything you need to know about the Beatles but doesn’t come across as overwhelming. The audio guided tour led us through renditions of famous Beatles landmarks and covered every milestone.

That night we went on a Pub Crawl on Mathew Street, which houses THE famous Cavern Club, the stage of the Beatles. Surreal. That is a
 word I could use to describe it. Even though the original was demolished in the 70's it was rebuilt only feet away as close to the original as possible. Sitting on a stool, having a drink, I tried to picture what it would have been like to see them up on stage in a packed room and be a part of the girls screaming for them. Because you know I would. NSYNC had my heart and they don’t even come close to the Beatles Revolution.

(Twistin' to the Twist and Shout inside "The Cavern")

The next day we boarded our Magical Mystery Tour to visit the following, George, Paul, Ringo, and John’s childhood homes, Penny Lane, Strawberry
Field, The church John first met Paul, The art school Paul and George went to, the place of John and Cynthia’s marriage…. and lots of other places only the crazed and obsessed would go. Yes, I fall in to that category.

(George Harrison's House)

My feelings about this weekend: Speechless. I am just so overly content I have no words.
The only downfall of the weekend is that it now highlights my desire to live in that time period even more. Tear. I will just have to live through imaginations.

(Paul Mc Cartney's House)

Friday, October 10, 2008

Lab Coat Obsession

Ok… So I am obsessed with my students. I want to take ALL of them home with me.

I don’t think I have mentioned yet how in Science they all wear matching, white scientist lab coats with matching scientist goggles with their matching little boy and little girl uniforms on underneath. Precious. So I LOVE it when they wear their lab coats. I purposefully try and plan lessons that will make them wear their lab coats! Ok yay.

Well this week we have been learning about differences in living and non-living things. There are seven characteristics that make something living. They must possess all of these: Movement, Respiration, Sensitivity, Growth, Reproduction, Excretion, Nutrition. They call it MRS. GREN to help them remember it. Well in my classes we came up with songs to help us remember.
Each class collaborated together and came up with their own tune and movements to MRS GREN.
Today I brought my video camera so that I could capture how stinkin’ adorable they are. I will soon post the video once I get it uploaded and edited.

While they were practicing the song I pulled out my video camera and told them I would be filming this time. They immediately jumped up and said
“Ooooo! Oooooo!! Ms Terry!” (in cute little boy and girl British accents)
“Can we put on our lab coats?!?”

I looked at them like a fat kid looks at cake. Hahaha maybe not that creepy. But like a 5 year old on Christmas morning. I had a smile on my face like I had just won a million dollars.
“ummmm……. Let me think (pause) Yes, children, yes you can”
It was like the stars aligned. Obviously I’m not going to make them put on their lab coats to sing a song. Did I want them to put on their lab coats? Abso-freakin-lutley!
And the best part is…they WANTED to!!!

Ok, as if this day couldn’t get any better, one of my classes decided to dance and sing their song to High School Musical! There’s nothing I like more than living life as a musical, and that’s exactly what it felt like. We sang and danced around the room in our lab coats and goggles and it was grand.

Then as we were settling down, I may or may not have told them to leave their lab coats on...Am I bad? To find joy in them wearing their lab coats? When they aren’t doing anything of lab coat importance but instead just taking notes.

Haha. Who am I and what have these lab coats made me become?

Ps. They also popped their lab coat collars and threw their hands up like gangstas.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Matthew 4:3-4

Now when the tempter came, to Him, he said, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread”

But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’”

What are my tempters? What are MY temptations? Of course, I’m not being commanded to turn bread in to stones to prove my power, identity and worth. But thinking back on this verse my personal tempters are constantly commanding me to do something or be someone straying me from the Lord.
Recently, I have found myself more attentive to my eating habits. Not that I have become obsessive about it or anything, but living in England has really put a damper on my regular workout routine.
No gym + rainy, cold, weather x 7 days a week + potatoes served at every meal – spare time = no workout
Hence, the need to watch what I eat. Denise Austin may have a plan for a Yoga body in 21 days, but that’s when you have a close to Yoga body to begin with. Just being honest.

But throughout the day I catch myself thinking “Taylor, If you are strong enough, You won’t eat that scone for breakfast……or that biscuit at tea……or even that delicious looking warm brownie screaming my name with a flashing neon light saying ‘PICK ME!’ in the lunch line”

So what is my tempter? The cookie itself? Or is it my own thought process? I am thinking that if I am strong enough I will not eat the cookie, when I should be focusing not on the cookie to prove my strength but rather turning to the Lord in all tempting situations to prove my strength.

I know this is kind of a silly topic to relate to this verse but I could go even further and use it with bigger issues like work related situations, relationships and friendships. All in which at some point or another command things of me. Man shall not live by material things and selfish commands made of him by tempters but by the word of God. That is the true struggle. But I guess even realizing that is half the battle.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

My current emotion


take a guess

Thursday, October 2, 2008

This post includes a picture of Adam Brody- You know it's going to be good!

I would like to say that my celebrity crush would end when I turned 22. Unfortunately, it hasn't and it has gotten a little more pathetic. This week our professors from Texas A&M University came to visit us in Windermere to check up on us and see how the program is working out. Tuesday night they hosted a dinner at a well-know fancy restaurant in town for our mentor teachers, headmasters and anyone involved with the program. It was a group of about 18. The restaurant had music playing quietly in the background. Of course The OC theme song "California" played and I immediately jumped from my seat in a 7 year old girlish scream as if Adam Brody himself had just entered the room! All the important people, actually ALL the people, looked at me as if in embarrassment, thinking "why did we send this 7 year old over here to represent us?" "Did she really just jump from her seat?". I quickly nodded and awkwardly sat back in my seat as the whole room was watching me in amazement. Im talking jaws dropped. Its like something that would happen to the awkward, nerdy, ugly girl in a movie.

So it's official. My crush on Adam Brody has officially gotten in the way of my professional life.
I'd like to tell you that is the only time I have thought about Adam Brody in a while. Well, sadly it isn't :/
Before I left for England I had a dream that he was sitting in the window seat next to me when I got to my seat on the plane. And also every time we go to a big city like London or Edinburgh I tell my roommates to keep an eye out for Adam Brody....I mean you never know!!! He could be vacationing.....