Stuff My Students Say

  1. “Ms. H, look at N’s toe! It’s so long and fat.”
  2. “Ms. H, you should have a baby so I can take her trick-or-treating and get free candy!”
  3. And then that same kid wrote on the board “Ms. H having a baby=free candy…This is a good idea and makes sense for everyone.”
  4. “Have someone read this for me and then burn it to expunge the demons of bad writing. Make sure a priest is present to exorcise said demons.”
  5. “It is my constitutional right as an American to not title my papers. It says so in Article uhm, let me get back to you on that, but just trust me on that for now.”
  6. “It’s been six days since I saw Paranormal Activity 3 and I haven’t slept alone since then…I’ve been sleeping with my mom.” (This was said by a football player.)
  7. “No, wait, Ms. H, I have really good taste in music. Wait, I’ll show you.”
  8. “Ms. H, it is true that you’ll give me -10 points on my paper because I don’t have my rough draft today? J says you will.”
  9. N: Wait, you’re leaving in five weeks? Why?
    A: Because she doesn’t love all of you.
    E: Notice that he said she doesn’t love “you,” not “us.”
    A: Yes, well clearly, she loves me, but she hates all of you.

They’re great kids and I love them-or at least I love A.

Random Wednesday

1. I’ve been letting my students write on the board when we have class discussions lately. Well, today, my third hour got a little creative. Below you can see J’s interpretation of the lives of Howard Roark and Dominique Francon-if they were pumpkins.

And then, we have the basic plot of The Fountainhead if Howard was a pumpkin.









I’m not entirely sure what inspired this, but I love it. It’s still on the board because I want my first hour to see it tomorrow morning.

2. Second hour, three of my students found out that my first name is Cecilia. This, apparently, meant that they HAD to sing Simon and Garfunkel’s ballad to me. Because clearly no one has ever done that before…

3. LCHS’s football team is in the state playoffs and this weekend they have their first home playoff game EVER. So one of my kids asked me (out of the blue) today if I would come to his game. I said probably. I think I’ll do it. But I want someone to go with me. I don’t want to freeze alone.


A Project Update…and other Mondayne Affairs

So, about three months ago, I bopped into Knit a Round (while sick, actually) and bought eight skeins of gorgeous purple yarn that I intended to use to make a Brennan cardigan. We’ve been over this before. I had these grand ambitions of knitting the whole thing in about three and a half months. It was going to be great. It would be done by November 3 when the new season of Bones premieres. I would wear it all day on November 3 and then wear it at home while watching the long expected new episode of Bones.

Well, there’s a lot of ways I could explain what’s happened in the past three months to you, but the easiest way would be to just copy and paste my project notes from Ravelry for your viewing pleasure.

“I’m so excited about this sweater. I kind of want to steal Brennan’s fashion sense.

8/11: Back stockinette done, cable panels started
9/4: Back right cable panel done; back left started
9/11: Back is done; I just need to sew the cable panels in. Tomorrow, I’m starting the sleeves; I need to feel like I’m actually making progress on this project.
9/12: One sleeve started!
10/24: First sleeve done; I’m not a slow knitter, just an easily distracted knitter.
Also, I started the right front. Theoretically speaking, this will not take me a month and a half to knit. But please remember, folks, this is all purely theoretical at this point. We can talk about this again in early December.

Surprisingly, this whole pattern moves along quickly. I love it. And I adore the yarn. Seriously adore it…I can’t say enough good things about the Shepherd’s Wool.”

Okay, so I still want to steal Brennan’s fashion sense, the pattern does move along quickly, and I do adore the yarn.

However, I am not a monogamous knitter. I have knitting AD-oh look at the pretty Cascade 220. So, in the mean time, I’ve accomplished other things and made some lovely scarves and hats. And I’ve even cast on two new sweaters in the past four days.

But the Brennan cardigan has sat patiently by while I flirted with other (supposedly) more exciting projects.

But yesterday, I knit over half the sleeve. And then I finished it today. Now let’s talk about instant gratification knitting. I started that sleeve on September 12. It set 35% done in my project bag for about a month. Then, I picked it up yesterday and the other 65% just happened. Now, I need to make the right front, the left front, and the other sleeve Just Happen. And then I have to block the whole thing, sew it all together, and take care of the button-band and collar.

Now, to be perfectly honest, it will NOT be done by November 3. But I will be working on it while watching the long-expected new episode of Bones on November 3 (on FOX at 9pm, I believe) and that’s good enough for me now.

And in other news, I have six weeks of student teaching left. Six weeks, 26 days…totally doable.

Tomorrow, I’m mailing in my graduation application and turning in my student teaching unit plan. I’m terrified of failure and yet, the end is in sight.

May God get me to the end of the semester…and the sweater.

Random Monday

  1. I just got home from Grand Rapids. It was a long trip, but I got to see Katie, Jenn, and other Katie. Therefore, it was a success.
  2. I’m also now almost halfway done with the blanket that I started in July that needs to be done in 14 days. I am not allowed to knit anything else until that project is done. I hope I can behave myself.
  3. I think I’m getting sick. I’ve actually suspected this for about a week, but I’m becoming more concerned about this potential. However, I’m blogging about it in the hopes that because no one ever reads my blog, this potential cold/illness will become a nonevent-kind of like I sometimes feel my blog is.
  4. I need to be writing lesson plans. I’m not however.
  5. I think I’ll go take my contacts out and do my lesson planning. And then I’ll go to bed. I’m so exciting; it’s no wonder no one ever reads my blog.

Frantic Friday

Here’s my week in review, but be warned; my writing is somewhat scatterbrained at the moment.

  1. I had a migraine most of the week, which kind of set the tone for my week.
  2. My CT had to take two personal days this week (yesterday and today) which left me in charge of the classroom with a substitute to babysit me. This led to many adventures.
  3. These adventures were all learning experiences, and I’m glad I’ve had the experiences.
  4. The head of the English department (Mrs. T) observed my third hour class, and she’s given me some really great advice.
  5. Yesterday, she suggested that I read the novel to the kids occasionally. So I tried it, and some of my classes loved it. Others hated it. But for the class that hated the very idea, it was a motivator to get them to read on their own. It’s interesting how what works for one class doesn’t always work for others.
  6. One of Mrs. T’s other suggestions was to let my kids take notes on the board while I lecture/lead discussions. I tried it during third and fifth hours today. Let me tell you; it works brilliantly. Kids who never participate suddenly throw their hands up in the air when you say “Who wants to write on the board for me?” It was such a gratifying experience for me in that I could see their involvement-and our discussions had more flow to them. Amazing.
  7. Yesterday, I turned my alarm off in my sleep and overslept by an hour. Somehow (by the grace of God and with the help of Momsy) I made it to school on time and made it through the day.
  8. A near-fight broke out between two girls in one of my classes yesterday. I took one look at the situation, realized that I couldn’t handle it, and booked it to grab Mr. H who teaches across the hall. He handled the situation while I watched-so I could learn from him. And then after school, we sat down and he “unpacked” the situation for me so I would know what to do if I ever came across such a situation again.
  9. And now it’s Friday, so I have a weekend to get caught up on grading and knitting.
  10. Le sigh.

FO: Catherine Moreland

The Austentatious Fiber Artists over on Ravelry have been having a Northanger Abbey Read-Along/Knit-and-Crochet-Along for the past several weeks. And for my part of this RAL/KAL, I’ve been working on a shawl design inspired by Catherine Moreland, the hero of the novel.

Today, I finished my first attempt at the shawl, blocked it, and took many pictures of it. And I thought I’d share them here so you can get a taste of the pattern. I’m planning on testing the pattern myself one more time to make sure that I’m confident in it. Then, I’m going to find some test knitters and then (probably around Christmastime) I’ll release it along with a Catherine Moreland-inspired scarf pattern that is currently percolating in my gray matter.

But for now, here’s Cate Round One.

I love the sun in these first two. The way the light hits the shawl with the latticework on the deck is perfect.




Although the shawl was designed for the purpose of keeping warm while wandering a chilly abbey, it’s also great for covering your shoulders on an Indian summer day.


This one is my favorite shot that I got. I just love the way the shawl hangs and then I got lucky with the lighting coming in from the front door.


And here it is with the book that inspired it all…

That’s the Cate for now. I’m planning on producing another one in red lace-weight in the near future, and hopefully I’ll have a pattern available for general purchase by Christmastime.

The Good, the Bad, and the BWAH?!?!

I’ve taught two and a half days this week, but somehow they’ve been a very bloggable two days. (And no, bloggable isn’t a word; I made it up so I could be like Shakespeare.)

Yesterday morning, we had standardized testing at LCHS. The afternoon was normal. So I only came in for the afternoon. This meant that I could knit and relax as I really needed.

The Good

But Monday afternoon, my CT and I had to rearrange the classroom for the next morning’s testing. Fifth hour, the first hour I taught yesterday, I left it in the testing rows, but sixth hour, I wanted it back in my typical horseshoe. I’m much more comfortable with the horseshoe. I think it’s much more conducive to teaching and learning-at least in my classroom.

The problem was that I didn’t have enough time to rearrange the room and do some teacherly things I wanted to do. And then, B came into the room. B is in my third hour, but he likes to stop in before sixth hour to see his friends in that class. I mentioned that I needed to rearrange the room and he said, “Hey, Ms. H, I could do that for you.”

I said, “Can you do it in five minutes so you won’t be late to your next class?”

He said yep. And then he did. Other kids came in and I suggested to them that they help B, but they said he had it; he could do it on his own. And he did. In less than five minutes, he rearranged my room for me. Awesome.

Then, this morning, I was giving my Visionary Lit kids a test on Brave New World. Before the test, I was taking their books back from them. When B came in third hour, I had an empty box and a pile of books sitting on the front table. He proceded to box up the books from my first-hour kids and his class for me.

B isn’t my only awesome kid, but he’s definitely stuck out the past couple of days.

The Bad

Today, I had to be a mature, responsible adult. Fifth hour, I was giving the BNW test for the last time when one of my students came up to me and asked if we could speaking privately because she was dealing with some personal problems that she felt were getting in the way of her testing experience. So I had to decide what the adult thing to do was and then procede in that course of action.

I think I made the right decision, but it was still a hard call to make. I remember being sixteen and it was an emotional time. Relationships at that age can be rough and I get that. But I also have to consider the fact that these kids are in school to be educated. How do you balance all of that?

The BWAH?!?!?!

The test I gave today included a question about the name of a city in the novel. One of my students replied that the city was named “Mexico” while others named it “Arizona” or “New Mexico.”

I was not aware of any cities in the southwestern United States with any of those names. But I’ll check the map…or propose the annexation of Mexico as a solution to the question of illegal immigration.

On the same test, one of my students told me that “John Lenin” had been the ruler/dictator of the U.S.S.R. If you google “John Lenin” it says “Are you stupid?” and automatically redirects you to “John Lennon.” Now, John Lennon did many things, but he never ruled any countries. But just imagine if he had…it’s easy if you try.