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I just spent about 5 minutes trying to be creative and make up a title for this blog…however, my creative juices aren’t flowing, so I gave up and started typing this. Now, I simply decided to name it, “(no title).” Anyway, today is only Tuesday, and I am already feeling good about this week. Yesterday I was having one of those bummed-out/leave-me-alone type of days, so I pretty much kept to myself. It was still a great day at school, but I just wasn’t in the mood to make it a fantastic day. On the other hand, today was a pretty fantastic day.

I woke up a little later than I usually do, so I didn’t get to have a big breakfast (which left me starving all morning,) but I also didn’t work out, so that’s quite alright. I also got to school later than I wanted, but my host mum is the driver-so thats not in my control. (As I type this I’m realizing this doesn’t sound like a good start to the day at all, but believe me, today made me smile.) Once I got to school, I put my lunch away and headed to my classroom to prepare my “Valentine’s” gift. At Pinehill each year, they do a Secret Valentine, which is similar to a Secret Santa type gift giving activity. So, I was given one of the other teachers information to give her personalized gifts before or on VDAY. Today, I brought Maraea her favorite drink: Vanilla Coke Zero. (Also, did I mention how everyone and their dog drinks Coke Zero instead of Diet coke here?) Because it is meant to be anonymous, I tagged the lid and left it in the “tea” room; photo below. (She drank it during morning tea & lunch by the way, and she thanked her anonymous valentine!) After I accomplished that, I continued back to our classroom to begin the day.

Kate and I were discussing the plan of action for the day, and she essentially gave me everything but writing and the Daily 5, since she was introducing something new and wanted to model it for me first. I started the day with roll and news. I quickly realized that the students were used to Kate’s enthusiasm (they eat it up every single day,) and I was not engaging them nearly as much as she does. These students are not used to the “Butler” approach, and I should be adapting to their style of acceptance or affirmation. So, after lunch, when I had them all to myself, I did just that. First, we had all school assembly, and we reminded them I was looking for students to earn house points (which is a HUGE motivator for everyone) by being an exceptional example during the assembly. They were so eager to do their best with the first step out of the classroom. After the assembly, I told them the 4 students who I had noticed and they were gleaming! The rest of them were excited for those who had earn the points, and that showed me how much they care about one another. We needed to finish their “Pinehill Way” posters (shown below,) so I motivated them throughout the entire process by showing good examples and pushing them to color more and do their best. They absolutely loved it! woo hoo 🙂 

Something else I was able to do was participate in Cricket during PE. I was the bowler, and let me tell you-that was very interesting. The students were having such a fun time! It was such a ball (no pun intended) to watch them play cricket as a class. When it was my turn to hit….ultimate failure. I missed about 8 bowls, and barely hit the 9th one. Needless to say, cricket is not my forte. (I also haven’t played softball in 8 years. so sad.)

Alright, so life outside of school is essentially sunbathing, eating well, and beautiful views. When my host parents went to play netball last night, I decided I would walk to Starbucks to get my favorite: White Mocha Frapp (skinny) with Cinnamon Dolce sugar-free syrup. 🙂 Unfortunately, it was closed. Instead, I continued walking toward the bay and was able to take more beautiful pictures of Browns Bay. It was nice to just sit at the edge of the shore and soak in God’s wonderful creation and thank him for everything he has given me and the wonderful ways he has blessed me. I never imagined I would be here, and there is a reason I am here. at this house. at this moment. in this house. with this family. at this school. this day. this month. this hour.


Enjoy the photos 🙂

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