Monday, March 30, 2009

The Free Ticket Fairy Strikes Again!

We've lived in the Twin Cities for 2 years and 10 months now and in that time, the Free Ticket Fairy has been very kind to us. We've been to 2 Twins games, 1 Timberwolves game (when they still were good), 3 Wild hockey games, 1 play, and now one concert at the Xcel Center... all free of charge. Our great friends Dan and Angie invited us to accompany them to the Chris Tomlin concert last night. Dan had been given the tickets by the local Christian radio station as a token of thanks for agreeing to direct a mass choir for a Michael W. Smith concert this fall. KTIS was very kind to Dan because our seats were incredible! Right in the second row, just feet from the stage.

Israel Houghton and New Breed opened for Tomlin and they were fantastic. I would have been happy with just them. Tomlin's concert was great of course, and we were pleasantly surprised to notice that Christy Nockels had joined up with him for this concert.
We met up early for dinner at the infamous Mickey's Diner.
Notice I'm standing on my tiptoes so as not to look so short. Real effective, huh?

Happy Birthday!

We celebrated Allie's 5th birthday and Mom G.'s ?? belated birthday on Friday night. We (humans only) enjoyed a delicious meal of crab legs thanks to Cub's $4.99/lb this past week. We've probably been waiting close to a year for crab to get that cheap again. We ended up buying about 10 pounds to keep in the freezer. What can I say, we love crab... especially when it's not $12 a pound. We had an ice cream dessert and let Allie enjoy a scoop of vanilla since it was her birthday.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Ready for spring!

This past week we've been graced with a number of spring-like days. It's been absolutely marvelous! Unfortunately it's days like these that make me desperate to go outside and start working the land. I love gardening. I don't know why; I think I get it from my dad. The problem is that I live in Minnesota and gardening now would only be in vain. We're bound to have a number of below freezing days and liable to have another snow before all is said and done. (Maybe if I plan on it, it won't happen!) So yesterday I figured out a way to satisfy my craving for gardening without it being a complete waste. I've turned our sun room into a greenhouse and started seedlings. There's an area in the back part of our back yard that (according to the neighbors) formerly housed a vegetable garden. It's since been overcome with weeds and a few wildflowers. The plan is to reclaim that little plot at the edge of our property and restore it to the vegetable garden I'm sure it would rather be. David and I have only ever planted a "salsa" garden before, so we're going to branch out and take a crack at a few other veggies. Assuming all the seeds I started succeed, the Gafford Garden 2009 will include.... corn, watermelon, big boy tomatoes, roma tomatoes, sweet 100 grape tomatoes, green beans, bell peppers, cucumbers, cilantro, and basil. I'm so excited, I can almost taste it!


We've been working through a unit on coral reefs at school. We made this cute little fish project earlier in the week. Each student needed 2 CDs in order to make their project so I sent out a letter about a week ago requesting garbage CDs to be sent in. Apparently someone took that as an invitation to clean out their John Cougar Mellencamp collection. I must have had 5 or 6 come in. It made me laugh outloud. Once they were made I had the fun job of hanging everything up from the ceiling. This is easier said than done for a teacher who is only 5'2" on a tall day. I could only find one table in the room that was tall enough for me to stretch to my limits and reach the ceiling. So I pushed that table all around the room until the job was done. The finished project looks great; I only hope the novelty of going to school "under the sea" wears off next week. Kids were holding their breath (because they were under water, apparently) and mesmerized by the fish swimming over head. Silly first graders...

Saturday, March 14, 2009


I haven't posted anything in a while... So sorry.

So, I went back to work a couple of weeks ago. That's been an adjustment for me; I got kind of used to staying up late/sleeping in, and having lots of time on my hands! In spite of being a lot more tired, it feels good working again. The first few days were a little rough. I'm teaching first grade right now and the kids had gotten a little out of shape management-wise before I arrived. In addition to being very pregnant, their teacher was quite sick with a sinus infection for the last few weeks so they'd had several subs in and out and a teacher that just plain didn't feel well so probably wasn't as strict as she would have been otherwise... After a few days of "Go back to your desks; we'll have to try lining up again. This time do it without talking," they finally figured out what I expected and this was a much better week! I'm also growing a little more familiar with my surroundings which is helping. I started out wasting a lot of my prep time looking for something that I needed, not even really knowing what I was looking for. It's a lot easier when you know exactly what you have in your own classroom and exactly where to find it. So anyway, I'm enjoying my time there and have been encouraged. I know that I did not lose my job at New Life Academy for anything that I did wrong or didn't do right, but regardless of the circumstances losing your job for any reason does affect your self esteem and confidence in your ability to do that job well. Getting this job has encouraged me and assured me that teaching is where I'm supposed to be and it's something that I'm good at. I needed that.

Other than that, David's been wonderful speaking my love language of "Acts of Service," helping ease the load as I transition back to working full time. Last Monday on his day off he planned the week's menu and did the grocery shopping all by himself. And then he went on to cook dinner for me... more than once this week! What a great guy!