Monday, December 31, 2012

2012: A Year In Review

January: Tim was tested to see if he was a CF carrier and the test came back negative, yay! Also, Kalydeco was approved by the FDA for CFers with the G551D mutation(which I have)!!!
February: Lots of snow, a doctors appointment, and my first blog award.
March: I started running outside and planning for the 2nd annual DeKalb Great Strides. I unfortunately had to reset my compliance count after forgetting some albuterol over a weekend out of town. I was at 215 days!
April: DeKalb Great Strides event went very well and raised over $20,000! There was also lots more running/training for my first 5K.
May: I applied for teaching jobs like crazy, ran some more and registered for Brett's Run (5K).
June: I completed my first 5K! FINALLY got my first teaching job!! (This was a great month!)
July: We started planning for our move due to my new job, and I started bringing items into my new classroom.
August: The big move (about three hours south), the first day(s) of school, and motivated myself to keep running by signing up for another 5K.
September: I completed my second 5K (The Shoreline Classic) about a minute faster than my first, signed up for the Glo Run and Turkey Trot.
October: Tim and I celebrated our two year wedding anniversary, and I developed my first chest cold of the season.
November: I completed the St. Louis Glo Run, our local Turkey Trot --and if you're counting, those were my 3rd and 4th 5K's of the year -- and I won a turkey at the Turkey Trot! :)
December: I won Bears vs Packers tickets and attended my first Bears game! I developed another chest infection due to my lovely, germy class/job. Oh, and we all survived "the end of the world". :-)

Overall, I'd say this was a pretty excellent year for me! I was able to accomplish/achieve many of my goals this year. I'm still working on getting my lung function up into the 90s and gaining back the weight I've lost from my added stress this fall. But these are things that I'll continue to work on in the coming year. I'm currently at 301 days of 100% compliance with my treatments - I'd say that another great accomplishment. This year was spent on trying to make myself the healthiest I could be by exercising and staying on track with my treatments. I plan on continuing my exercise this spring, while I focus on weight gain this winter. Here's to a happy, healthy, productive 2013!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Another Mark Off The Bucket List

About a week or so ago I posted about how I won tickets to the Bears vs Packers football game. Well, the game was yesterday and it was a lot of fun. Unfortunately, the Bears lost against the Packers (not a huge surprise, honestly), but it was still a fun time -- awesome energy in the crowd. Our seats were in section 251 - the north end zone. We weren't at the lowest level, or the highest levels, just perfect. I cannot believe how expensive everything was, but I'm very lucky to have won the tickets and had this experience with Tim. Here are a couple pictures from the game:
Announcing the Bears

First kick-off - tried to zoom in to get a good
shot of Hester

Half time :)

When the Bears should have scored a touch down!
Pretty sweet view from our seats, though.


Sunday, December 16, 2012

CFer Dies Of Cancer

Above my blog posts is a little box that shares any type of article or story in the news about Cystic Fibrosis and today, this one caught my eye: "Cystic Fibrosis sufferer given smoker's lungs in transplant dies of cancer...".
Unfortunately, transplant patients are at a higher risk of developing cancer after a transplant (like my friend, Joe), so that wasn't really what grabbed me about this. The part that I was startled by was the "given smoker's lungs in transplant". I just don't know what to think about this. I don't think I would want a smoker's lungs if I had to get a transplant. If I'm going to get a transplant, I don't want another set of damaged, crappy lungs - I'd want the best ones possible. But at the same time, the article makes a good point in saying that about 40% of organ donors are smokers. So if smokers weren't allowed to be organ donors, that would decrease the available donated organs by ~40%, which makes things difficult when there are so many people on the transplant list.

I don't really know where I'm going with this post because I don't really know how I feel about it. The article states that patients are more likely to live longer by getting smoker's lungs than rejecting them and waiting for another non-smoker's set to come along. I guess this just surprised me - I assumed that they wouldn't give a transplant patient smoker's lungs, but I haven't looked into the topic too much. I guess there's such a great need, that they'll take any lungs that are better than the ones the patient currently has...

They don't say for sure, in the article, if this woman developed lung cancer because of the smoker's lungs or not, but I can understand why her family, and new husband, would be so upset by her too soon death after transplant. Unfortunately the woman was not aware that she was receiving smoker's lungs going into the transplant, and her husband said that if she would have known, he thinks she would have not accepted them.

This just makes me think: How picky should you be when you're desperate for new lungs? I don't know if 'picky' is the right word... Would you reject smoker's lungs in hopes that a new, healthier set would come along? But then how much longer would you be waiting? Would you be able to live long enough for a second match? Or do you accept the smoker's lungs because they're probably better than the ones you've got right now? Should/Do hospitals have to disclose information about the donor (smoker vs nonsmoker) to the recipient?
Again, I don't know a ton about the transplant process, so I'm sorry if I seem uninformed - because I really am. This just got me thinking...

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

No Such Thing As Colds

Only eight more days until winter break where I have two weeks off! You'd think I'd be super excited right now, but I honestly think I'll get bored over break and miss my little ones...I know, I know, you probably think I'm crazy! :) But they're just so darn cute...until they're hacking up a lung in my face!
Our entire school is sick - it's disgusting! And I thought somehow it had missed me....wrong! Unfortunately, I've caught whatever it is, too. Luckily, I haven't had a fever,  throwing up, or flu-like symptoms (*fingers crossed*), but of course it started in my head (nasal) like it always does. And of course this time I told myself, It's just a cold, you'll get over it. Just keep doing your treatments and drink lots of water.  Wrong!

It all starts the same way for me, every time - you'd think I'd learn by now: starts with painful, sore post-nasal drip for a couple days **this should be my que to start anti-biotics**. Then it turns into a stuffy nose (when I think I just have a "normal-people cold"), then it turns into a dry-hacking cough (had this by the end of the night last night) and now a very tight chest with nagging cough (as of this morning). EVERY TIME it progresses in the same way, and every time I think I'll be able to kick it in 3-4 days like a non-CFer, that it's just a cold. Well, it seems that in my CF world, there's no such thing as "just a cold" anymore.
So I caved in this morning and emailed my doctor and nurse, then later I'll call the doctor and possibly Facebook my nurse - contact them in every way possible - so they'll call in another lovely round of two weeks of Cipro. UGH! And if I have the same reaction to it that I did last time, any of the weight I've gained over the past two months will go right out the window.

This is why it's so important for me to have that 'extra weight', so that when I do get sick and my body is losing more calories because it's fighting harder, then I'll have a couple extra pounds to spare....well, this time I feel like I don't have those extra pounds to spare, so I'm really going to have to work on keeping this weight on! People think that it must be wonderful to have someone tell you to gain weight instead of lose it, but it's honestly just as hard for me to gain as a non-CFer to lose weight. It's not fun. Having to stuff yourself with 3,000 calories a day, hoping that you took enough enzymes for your body to absorb all of that food so you're not spending the entire day in the bathroom...yeah, that's real fun!

It's times like these that a tiny little part of me is wondering if I'm in the right field. I ABSOLUTELY love my job, but it just sucks because I'm exposed to so many germs. I'm not saying that I want to find another job because this is exactly what I want to be doing - it's just a tough field to be in when you have a health condition. I just hope that my health isn't impacted so much that my CF clinic results aren't good. I've got about 5-6 more weeks to get my body feeling the best for those PFTs.

Here's the CF-brain's thinking: Why can't I just have a normal 2-3 day cold like everyone else? How come I have to go on antibiotics every time I'm not feeling well? I just get so worried that I'm going to become resistant to Cipro because I was just on it in October. Being resistant to an oral antibiotic cuts down the others available to take when I'm sick. I HATE winter! I was so tempted to open my classroom window yesterday to get rid of some of that nasty germ-infested air, but I thought that probably wouldn't be too fun with sick kids and 30 degree temperatures. :) Maybe I need to invest in some Lysol for my whole room...don't think the Clorox wipes are enough...

Anyway, I will not let this "cold" ruin my weekend! We have a staff Christmas party Friday night, then Saturday we're going to visit some friends and Sunday we're going to the Bears Game! Yes, I'll be sure to bundle up. I didn't forget what winters are like in Chicago. Even though it'll be a busy weekend, I'll be trying to fit extra treatments in somewhere.

I'm sorry that this post has turned into a complete bitch-fest, but it just sucks and I needed to vent. I'm not asking for you to feel sorry for me, this is life with CF - the good, the bad, and the ugly. That's the purpose for this blog. :)

Monday, December 3, 2012

And The Winner Is...

This is the little gift I won at the
meeting on Friday. 
This has been such an interesting past couple of weeks! I won a turkey through the raffle at the Turkey Trot, Friday afternoon at a PLC meeting I won a cute little Christmas decoration and candy, and today was definitely the best: I won two tickets to the Bears vs Packers game on Sunday, December 16th! I grew up a Bears fan and I've always wanted to attend a professional football game - it's actually on my "Goals" page - I just never thought the day would come because tickets are so expensive.
Our school participates in a program called Play 60, which encourages students to be active for 60 minutes a day to fight childhood obesity. Well, I guess the program sent us two tickets to the Bears/Packers game (huge rivalry, for those who aren't from the area). So our home/school liaison approached me this morning saying that they have the tickets and they were going to raffle them off to anyone who participated in the Turkey Trot, and asked if I'd be interested. Of course I said yes, thinking I'd never win. Well about 2:30 this afternoon while we were doing a class craft, she came in my room with the secretary behind her with a camera (to get a picture of my reaction), and said, "Guess who won the tickets?!" I was so surprised!! So I texted Tim right after school to tell him about it, too. I don't know a ton of information yet, just when the game is. I'm not sure where our seats are, but I really don't care - I'm just so excited that we get to go to a Bears game together!

So, in a crazy round-about way, I have CF to thank for this opportunity. If it wasn't for me having CF, I would have never started running. I'm very proud of myself for accomplishing four 5k's over the past few months, so maybe this is my reward - crossing off another one of my big goals! Sweet! :-)

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

I Love My Job!

This post is long overdue, but I'll try the best that I can. First off, I LOVE my job! I really do. As much work as it is, it is just SO rewarding and hilarious. My class is just so funny! The principal told me once that if he wants to laugh that day, he can just come into my room. :-)
The first couple months were a little hectic because we (students and I) needed to get into a groove. I also had a wonderful teaching assistant in the morning, but unfortunately she had to leave because she accepted a full-time position at another school. That was a total bummer to me because the next person was going to have big shoes to fill. But I am happy, and lucky, to say that my new assistant (that I've had for about a month now) is fantastic!!
Now we're settling into a better routine and each day is truly an adventure. I never know what these kids are going to say or do, and they just crack me up! I can't imagine not enjoying my job. Everyone needs to find a job that they love - it just makes life so much better. And now, long overdue:

Kinder Quotes & Stories: 
Student: "I know what I'm going to get Santa for Christmas?"
Me: "What?"
Student: "A girlfriend."
Me: "Santa doesn't need a girlfriend, he has a wife - Mrs. Claus! He can't be married and have a girlfriend."
Student: "What?! I've never seen her in my life!"

Student: "My mom won't let me wear pajamas to school tomorrow."
Me: "Why not? We just decided today what we're doing for our reward. Your mom doesn't even know yet."
Student: "Because I'm grounded"
Me: "Why are you grounded?"
Student: "Because I pee the bed." (totally not embarrassed)
Me: "Well, why do you pee the bed?"
Student: "Because I get cold at night."
Me: (What?!?!)???? -- I don't think I responded....
This story is just so weird! Not going to lie, this student is a little strange, too.

Student: "Mrs. Bite-in-gwoober"
Me: "Yes?"
Student: "I wub you."

An ambulance goes by on the street outside our school with the sirens on. A student says, "Someone died." (Again, my reaction is What?!)

This is my #2 favorite story so far: We're just coming back from lunch/recess and I reminded my few students with glasses to remember to put their glasses on, which they keep at their tables on their name tags. One kid goes in the closet and comes out completely serious with huge, 3D theater glasses on!!! I immediately said, "Put those away now." And he looked at me and said, "What? You said we needed to put our glasses on." So again, very calmly I said, "Put those away now." So the student runs back to the closet and starts loud-obnoxious-fake crying (my pet peeve!), so I had to take the glasses away. This entire time though, I was dying laughing on the inside!!! It was hilarious because the glasses were so big on his head and he had a straight face the entire time!!!!

My #1 favorite story happened just this afternoon (and if we're Facebook friends you probably already saw it): We were doing an activity called Heggerty, which is oral phonics. The section's directions were "teacher says a word and the students repeat it. Teacher tells students to take away the beginning blend and say what is left of the word."
Me: "Glass"
Students: "Glass"
Me: "Take away the 'gl'"
Students: "Ass"
*Then there was a very short awkward pause and lots of hilarious, shocked looks on their faces! And one student says, "Ooooooo, Mrs. Veitengruber made us say a cuss word!" And you could just see the lightbulbs going on for the other students.... :) So we all just laughed for a good two minutes about it and then  said, "Bad Heggerty! That's a naughty word to make us say!" It was AWESOME! I felt like we all became a little closer because of that today. :)

I know there are more, but I can't think of them right now. I need to start writing them down... hope you enjoyed... :-)

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Random Thoughts

  • I haven't blogged in about a week - I feel like I'm due for a post, but there's not too much going on right now. 
  • Tim just left with his dad for Tennessee to help his sister and her husband add a bedroom to their house to sell it. They're moving back to this area as soon as they're able to sell their house! Sweet! Tim will probably be gone all week. Bummer.
  • We had a nice Thanksgiving with Tim's family and my family. Tim smoked the turkey I won at the Turkey Trot and it was delicious!
  • We had the rest of the long weekend at home, which we used to put up our Christmas decorations and begin our Christmas shopping.
  • Call me crazy, but I'm already getting excited for Great Strides in 2013. I was looking up sites/dates last night and realized there is one at the same park where I just did my Turkey Trot -- that's about 5 minutes from our house! I'm super excited that there's a local one here that Tim and I (and whoever else wants to join us!) can participate in next year!
  • I'm going to try to count my calories again this week. Since Tim's gone, I won't be eating out at all, so it'll be easier to track with everything in the house.
  • My goal is to be around 117-120 pounds at my next CF clinic appointment in January - which means I need to gain at least 5 pounds in the next 2 months....easier said than done.
  • I'm debating on buying a scale to help monitor my weight. I don't know if that'll make me too obsessed, or if it'll help me. 
  • I need to focus on snacking between meals and/or eating smaller meals more frequently throughout the day...easier said than done.
  • That's about all I can think of...time to go eat. :-)

Monday, November 19, 2012

Turkey Trot 2012 & Out Run CF

This past Saturday, I ran my fourth 5k - the local Turkey Trot! I cannot believe that I have run four 5k races since June! I am so proud of myself for surpassing my goal of running one.
We had excellent weather for our Turkey Trot on Saturday morning. It was very sunny, no wind and probably about 45 degrees by the time the race started -- much better than I thought it was going to be when I first signed up for it. I finished 5th in my age division (18-24) with a time of 32:37 - that's my best time yet! Here are a few pictures from the event:
My kindergarten teacher friend, Natalie, and I.
This was her first 5k and she finished in under 30 minutes!

Gotta show my CF love & support with my
Out Run CF shirt! :)

I also won a turkey! There was a raffle
at the end of the race and I won a 14.4lb turkey!
I'm planning on this being my last run for the year. I'll try to pick back up again in the spring when it's warm enough to start running outside again because I've really enjoyed the past 5-6 months. My focus right now is maintaining my treatment compliance (259 days and counting!), gaining a little weight, and staying healthy this winter. I'm also going to focus on having more blog posts that don't have to do with running! :-)


Sunday, November 4, 2012

St. Louis Glo Run!

All smiles after completing the run! :-)
Last night, my sister-in-law, cousin and I ran in the St. Louis Glo Run 5K! It was so much fun! I loved doing something like this with family, too! There were a couple DJs (one at the start/finish and the other along the course), strobe lights, black lights, glow sticks and awesome neon race shirts. Since it was in the 40s, the DJ played some dance music before the run to get everyone dancing and warmed up - it was a fun, party atmosphere.
This wasn't as 'intense' as a typical 5K because it was not timed, but it was still a good run. The course was marked with glow sticks and was a little dark at times. There were three tents to run through set up along the route which were sweet: a black light tent, a strobe light tent (very weird to run through) and a multicolored light tent.
There was also a costume contest at the end, which we were unaware of, so there were people dressed in all kinds of things like tutus, neon wigs, butterfly wings, etc. We're already planning on making our wardrobe much more interesting for next year's run!
I was expecting more 'fun' along the route, but I can't complain. I didn't train myself very well for this race, but I did pretty well. My sister-in-law and I walked for about 5 minutes together, and we both ran the rest of the way. I finished in about 37 minutes, I think -- I wore my watch and estimated that we didn't start running til about 6:35 and I crossed the finish line around 7:12ish. My legs are killing me today, but I was coughing up so much lovely mucus. When I don't run for a while, I forget how much my lungs benefit from it. I wish I was better about running/exercising more regularly.
The Glo Run did help me realize that I can still run in cold weather. It was probably mid 40s last night and I didn't notice any difference in my breathing because of the cold air. I layered up and actually was sweating by the time I was done despite it being chilly. I'm not as worried about the Turkey Trot that's coming up in two weeks. I'm sure that one will be a bit colder, and if it's hard on my lungs I'll take it easy, but I know that if I layer up, I can keep myself warm.
Last but not least, I try to show some CF love/support when I do my races because it's the reason I'm doing them in first place. Last night, they had neon paint that you could use, so this is what I chose to do: "Cure CF"

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Out Run CF - Gobble, Wobble!

A few times a year, the Rock CF Foundation and CysticLife hold an event called Out Run CF -- the next one is taking place on Thanksgiving.

In case you missed out last time, or need a refresher, here is how it works. Anyone and everyone is invited to participate: Fibros, Cysters, parents, spouses, friends, extended family, you name it! Participants will find a route near their house. Then on November 22nd, 2012, EVERYONE will lace up their sneakers and hit the pavement in their Out Run CF shirt (Each registrant will receive a t-shirt unique to this fall’s race from us in the mail).
No distance is too long, or too short. YOU pick YOUR mileage. 1 mile? 5K? 10K? 10 miles? Half Marathon? Marathon? It’s up to you! Nothing is too fast or too slow YOU pick YOUR speed. We just want to get the entire CF community out of their houses and into their running shoes on the same day, for the same cause.
Registrants can blog about their training, ask questions, and share tips on We want the entire site to be plastered with talk of exercise, running, and encouragement. On race day, we want people to post their times and their experiences. Let’s make this Virtual Race even BIGGER than the first one! Let’s make it the biggest race the community, and the world, has ever seen!!

So here again are the hard facts:

Who: Everyone
What: Outrun CF Virtual Race held by Rock CF Foundation and CysticLife
When: November 22, 2012 -- Thanksgiving Day
Where: Anywhere
Why: Because anyone can run—whether it’s for a minute or a marathon! Together we can Out Run CF.

The awesome shirt that goes with this Out Run CF event.
Each event they have a new shirt - which I've worn in all of my
5Ks so far...looks like I'll have a nice new one to support CF
during my local 5Ks! :)
(Photo courtesy of Out Run CF facebook page)

How : Register at

It's a great *and easy* way to raise money for Cystic Fibrosis. If you register by November 1st (Thursday), you'll receive the awesome shirt in time for race day! If you register after Thursday, you'll still get a shirt, but it's not guaranteed to be there by the 22nd. The shirt is also "A4 Adult Cooling Performance" shirts, so actual workout material! Sweet! Any questions, check out Out Run CF on Facebook or talk to me.

Finally, if you're my Facebook friend and you decide to Out Run CF on Thanksgiving, please tag me in your pictures! And if you live near by, maybe we can run together. :) I'd love to see how many of my friends are helping support the CF Foundation in a few weeks!! Thanks!!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Pack on the Pounds

Courtesy of Google Images - not my feet!
I didn't realize how long it's been since I've posted until the other day. I've completed my round of Cipro and it totally sucked this time! I'm feeling better, but still tired from working all the time -- I never realized how time-consuming teaching was going to be, but I wouldn't change it for the world (that's an entirely different post though). I had the most side effects from this round of Cipro then I ever have, and it was not fun. I think I've lost a couple pounds from being on it. It made me very bloated and I was not absorbing anything that I ate -- sorry for the TMI. It was a really uncomfortable two weeks, so I wasn't exercising much. Who wants to go run a couple miles when they're bloated and tired?! Not me!!
So my plan is to do what my title says - pack on the pounds! Honestly, I don't think my exercise is affecting my weight too much, because I'm not running consistently. So that's not really helping my lungs a ton either. Once I get these next two 5Ks done, I'll probably put running on the back burner this winter to focus on gaining weight in a healthy way. Ideally for my body to be at it's healthiest, I should probably try to gain 8-10 pounds. I was weighed on Wednesday and I've dropped to 112.7! I haven't seen those numbers in a while. Unfortunately, I am comfortable with the way my body is looking right now (pretty flat tummy!), but that's not important. I know that I need to gain this weight back in case I need to go on antibiotics again over the winter.
One of my friends posted a picture of me on Facebook from a few weeks ago and I've completely lost all the 'chubby' in my face...I kind of looked sickly (in my opinion). That weekend one of my other friends made a comment about how 'super skinny' I looked and asked if I lost if other people are noticing, I know I need to get back to where I was. It's more important for me a to be a little bit chubby and healthy, than this skinny and getting sick. My goal is to be back into the high 100-teens (116-119ish) by my next clinic appointment in January so my doctor and nurse don't yell at me! :) They don't yell, but you know what I mean....even if it means I go back to Scandishakes...
So as much as I know running was making me feel better, now that it's getting colder and since I've been teaching, I've not been running consistently. Someone on CysticLife did suggest weight lifting to help build muscle which would increase my weight, so that's something I will look into over the winter. I never pictured myself doing any type of lifting, but then again, two years ago I never pictured myself running and I here I am about to complete two 5Ks in the next month!

This brings me to my question/suggestions I'm looking for: More so ladies, (but guys, I'll take your input, too) what do you do for weight lifting AT HOME? I'm not interesting in spending money to join a gym over the winter. Or what other types of fitness activities do you do in the comfort of your own home? I do have Zumba for the Wii which I may need to bust out since we're not living above anyone anymore, but I'd like a variety. Thanks! :)

Thursday, October 11, 2012

New Color

**Note: Mucus talk, don't read if you don't want to learn about my mucus.
Last week I posted how I was starting to get a sinus infection or something. Well I increased my treatments to 3-4 a day over the weekend, 2 on Tuesday (back to work) and 3 yesterday. Unfortunately, I developed a dry, itchy cough as of Tuesday, so we (doctor, nurse and I) decided to start me on Cipro. I took my first dose last night and I'll be on it for two weeks. This morning after taking a shower, I had my first big cough of the morning and I coughed up a big glob of brownish, rust-colored mucus. This is definitely a new color for me. Coincidence that I took my first dose of Cipro before bed and this is what I cough out the following morning? Or is it just all of the extra treatments moving this (I'm assuming) old mucus out of my lungs? Or could it be that I walked two miles yesterday evening? Interesting...

Either way, at least things are moving around in there because I'd rather have a productive cough to get it out, than have a dry scratchy one where everything's just sitting down there. And I'll be honest, I was tempted to take a picture because I was so surprised by this, but I didn't know if that would just be too much... :-) Anyway, if anyone has any ideas of where this nasty colored stuff came from (duh, my lungs), or why it is this color, or if you've had this before, I'm very interested. I'm not usually one to discuss my mucus - I think it's totally disgusting and I HATE spitting - but this kind of blew my mind at 5:15 in the morning. :-)
*This is the first post that I've labeled 'mucus' after over 140 posts!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

730 Days!

Tim and I have been married for 730 days, today! :-) Today marks our two year wedding anniversary. It's been a fun-filled, busy and sometimes a little crazy past two years, but it's been wonderful! To read about how we met and our first five years together, you can go here. Yes, that means that it's been six years, total, that we've been together. That may not seem like much to some people, but it sometimes makes me feel old! :)
This weekend we celebrated by going out to dinner together. The next day, our friends stopped by and took these pictures for us. 

We were too lazy to stand up to take a nice picture, so this is how it came out. When we both realized
how goofy we looked, we decided to take a nice one standing up.
My friend Kristen, found this idea on Pinterest. We are holding the picture that was taken
last year on our first anniversary. Then next year we'll hold the picture above in a frame so that we
have our first and second anniversary picture in the current picture (that's really hard to explain!).
Happy anniversary, Tim!! I love you!!

Friday, October 5, 2012

It's Been 5 Months

...since my last dose of Cipro, and I might have to start it up again. Darn, adorable, gross kindergarteners spreading their germs! :) It was bound to happen sooner or later, so I'm not surprised.
Last post I shared about my flu shot, and I'm happy to report that I didn't have any kind of reaction to it which I was happy about. But around Tuesday/Wednesday I was having a ton of post nasal drip and the back of my throat was getting very sore. I couldn't tell if it was just allergies or if it was the start of a cold, so I just tried to get as much of it out as possible. Then yesterday it started to work its way into my sinuses and today I've been sneezing and blowing my nose all day - I've also got a lot of sinus pressure.
This morning I decided to email my doctor and nurse to see if they could call in a 14 script for Cipro because I wanted to catch this before it went into my chest and became any worse. Well, I just got off the phone with my doctor a little bit ago, and she thinks that it could possibly be viral (since that seems to be going around right now) -- which means the Cipro really wouldn't do much. So I'm going to wait it out over the next day or two to see if it gets any worse or starts to move into my chest. If it does, she wants me to start my two weeks of Cipro and also to pair it with a month of Tobi. She also told me to increase my airway clearance to 3-4 times a day to try to get rid of whatever it is...ugh!
I know I've been so complaint with my treatments over the past year, but I hate increasing my treatments! I'm really good about getting in my treatments twice a day, but that doesn't mean I enjoy doing them or that I don't ever stall to do them each day. So now that I have to do three-four a day, that just drives me crazy. But I'm going to do my best to try to keep up with the extra treatments, especially because I have a three day weekend so I should have the time. I'd love to kick this cold or whatever it is out of my body without having to go on Cipro because I don't want to build up any resistance to it. I used to go on Cipro maybe once a year, and this would be my third dose this year, so lets hope I can get rid of it on my own with increased treatments. :-)

Saturday, September 29, 2012

What's Another 6 Miles?

Well, I officially signed up for the Turkey Trot on November 17th! The race is at 9am, so I'm hoping the sun will be shining and it'll be above freezing that morning! :-) I also was able to get one of my fellow kindergarten teachers to sign up for it yesterday - this will be her first 5K! I'm excited that I'll have someone to run (slowly jog) with this time. I actually signed up for it last week, but still haven't gotten myself to go running since the Shoreline Classic two weeks ago.

Then this morning my sister-in-law asked me to do the "Glo Run" with her and her husband (and maybe Tim's cousin) on November 3rd. It looks like so much fun!!! It's an evening run, beginning at 7pm, where the runners get to wear glow sticks, neon shirts, and there will be black lights, strobe lights and a DJ throughout the course!! You do get a number bib, but the run itself is not timed - it's more about the fun and less about the run. :-) I'm SUPER excited to do something like this with family, and it'll be excellent practice for my Turkey Trot two weeks later.

Looks like I'll really need to keep up with my running so that I'm in tip-top shape for these two 5Ks in November. After I signed up for the Glo Run this morning, I was definitely motivated to get back outside again. It was perfect running weather - beautiful, sunny, low 60s with a slight breeze = perfect! I had been telling myself to go to Walgreens to get my flu shot this week and I've just forgotten, so this morning I decided to run to Walgreens and get it! Then after I got my flu shot, the pharmacist told me to walk around the store for a couple minutes to make sure I felt fine before I left, and I made the comment, "Oh, so I shouldn't run home, then?" She looked really confused and I told her that I ran here and that I was planning on running back....she didn't really seem to care, haha! So after I walked around for a few minutes, I decided to start walking back, but after a couple minutes of walking I just gave in and jogged all the way home (0.8 of a mile each way).

I've been feeling fine since I've gotten my flu shot. A couple other CFers I know have experienced some nasty side effects from their flu shots this year, so I'm really hoping that doesn't happen to me. I've never had a reaction to the shot before and I've gotten one every year for as long as I can remember. The only problem I get is a sore arm for a couple hopefully it'll stay that way this year, too.
People have asked me why I get a flu shot if it doesn't protect from every strain of the flu. My answer to that is because some protection is better than none at all. When I catch a cold, or worse the flu, it impacts my body more than a person without CF, especially if it makes it's way into my chest. It could really take a toll on my lung function and my weight because my body would be working extra hard to fight it. I'm also more susceptible to germs this year since I'm working with wonderful, germy, gross little 5 & 6 year olds! So, I suck up a little arm pain for a few days if it means trying to stay even healthier this winter.

Speaking of things taking a toll on my weight - I've definitely noticed that I've lost some weight since I began teaching. Of course I don't mind the way I look because I've lost a lot of my CF belly, but I know that it's important for me to gain a couple extra pounds in case I do get sick this winter. I've also heard that the more healthy your weight is, the better your lung function is....someone please explain that one to me...?
Anyway, I've been struggling with the amount of calories that I'm taking in vs. the amount that I'm burning at work. I eat breakfast, lunch and dinner everyday, but it's just not enough. Plus I think the extra running is also burning calories that I'm not getting back. I'm really trying to get better about eating healthier because it makes me feel much better (less bloating & bathroom issues), but then I feel like it's harder to get the extra calories I need. If anyone has suggestions of healthy ways to add calories to my diet, I'd really appreciate it. I can't snack too much at work because I'm with my kids most of the day - but I can sneak in a quick snack during plan time if I have it that day. I don't drink whole milk, I drink 2% because it makes me feel better. I'm not a huge peanut butter fan, unless it has chocolate on it. I'm not a huge snacker, I'd prefer to have meals, but I know that has to change. And I'd say I'm a fairly picky eater when it comes to vegetables...but I'm trying to eat healthier -- more home cooked meals and less frozen, fatty crap. Suggestions welcomed in the comments section. Thank you :-)

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Shoreline Classic 2012

I ran my second 5K this morning!!! And I completed it about a minute faster than my first one, woo hoo! Originally, Tim and I planned to run it together and we both signed up. But this past week, we had been running together and Tim developed shin splints. He's not one to complain about pain unless it's really bad and he was miserable, so I felt terrible that he had to come take pictures of me when he was supposed to be out there with me. He made a smart choice though because we were afraid he wouldn't be able to walk if he tried to run today! I was still really happy that he was there to support me while I chugged along the more-hilly-than-I-thought course. :) I didn't have such a huge adrenaline rush this time around, but I was still able to run the entire course without stopping, walking or re-hydrating until I crossed the finish line.

When I was in high school, if someone would have told me that I would be excited about running 5Ks in my 20s, I would have called them crazy. Also, if someone told me then that I was going to be healthier in my 20s, I would have called them even crazier because I thought it was nearly impossible to gain any lung function back. Now here I am feeling healthier than I have in a very long time, kicking CF's butt because my compliance and exercise! It just feels good to finally be taking care of myself because I want to, not just because I have to. I still don't absolutely love running, but the feeling I get when I cross the finish line is SO worth it. It's going to be a challenge this winter to stay active because I'm not signed up for any gyms, but I'll have to start looking into alternative exercise until I can get back outside.

I'm debating about signing up for the local Turkey Trot in November. I know it'll probably be much colder than it was this morning (which was high 50s-low 60s) which might not be the best for my lungs. But even if I can't run the whole thing that time, at least I'd be getting out there and doing it! Well...I think I just resolved my issue -- getting out there and trying is better than making excuses and skipping it. Stay tuned in two months for my third 5K, the Turkey Trot on November 17th!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Scattered Thoughts

I don't have one specific story for this post, just a recap of everything that's been going on lately. So I apologize if it seems scattered or all over the place.

  • One week from today Tim and I will be running our first 5K together. This will be my second, and his first. I'm excited to be doing something productive/healthy together! 
  • We walked a mile then ran a mile this morning and it felt great. He was way ahead of me and finished about 2-3 minutes before me, but it was fun to "compare notes". I told him I felt great afterwards and he said it was because I ran slow. So I told him how I was jogging so my 'breathing didn't get messed up' and he said something along the lines of how his breathing was. I tried to explain to him that I don't run to finish fast, I run to control my breathing, but he just gave me a really confused look....I don't think he's as in-tune with his body as I am. :-)
  • I have taught kindergarten for 14 days now! :-) I LOVE IT! My kids are starting to understand the expectations a little bit better (most of them), and we're slowly getting into a routine. I can't wait for it to be a month from now when hopefully more of the kinks will be worked out and things will be running more smoothly. 
  • I feel like I am getting a lot of support from my co-workers. One of them gave me "props" the other day because I'm constantly on my kids when they're in the hallway to behave correctly -- I don't want that annoying class that acts like hoolagins (don't know how to spell that) in the hallway! I just thought that was part of my job, but apparently some people don't do that, so it's nice that other staff members noticing that I'm trying my best.
  • My grandma passed away this past week after a long battle with brain cancer, she was 84. She was on a slow, steady decline, so we kind of knew it was coming, but it's still hard. I liked to refer to her as the "Queen Bee" of our family, so it's going to be strange not having her around anymore. So later today and tomorrow, Tim and I will be spending time in Chicago with my family for her services.
  • This coming weekend we're going camping with Tim's family! This is something we do every year around this time. It's really fun and it's something that I look forward to every year. Since Tim and I signed up for the 5K on Sunday though, we're only able to go camping Friday (after work) and Saturday. But, since we moved, we're only 2 hours away! We used to be about 4 hours away which sucked.
  • I'm looking for someone who's going to be around our area Sunday morning to take pictures of Tim and I doing our 5K. It'd be about 8:30am before we're crossing the finish line.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Seven Days Under My Belt

Tomorrow is the eighth day of school already! I can't believe it, it's been going so fast! The first day of school, honestly, was a little lot nuts! It was just chaotic because I didn't know what to expect (with breakfast, lunch, dismissal, etc), and of course the kids didn't either. But we've gotten MUCH better each day! We're slowly getting into a routine together and getting to know the rules/expectations.

I have 24 five-year-olds in my room, some of them have never been to school before! But like I said, they are learning so much everyday, even if we haven't touched on a lot of curriculum yet. Last week was all procedures/rules/expectations and practicing them (about 100 times...) over and over! One boy even started crying because he didn't know why we were sitting on the carpet, lining up, and then sitting back on the carpet about 5 times in a row....guess I forgot to explain that we were just practicing. :-) I finally got into some real teaching this week and it feels wonderful! I love being up at the front of the room being the actual teacher! I have a WONDERFUL assistant every morning and I am lucky to have a paid, high school intern who comes in every afternoon. The other staff members have been extremely welcoming and helpful over the past couple of weeks and it is much appreciated!!

I am nowhere near perfect as far as classroom management, lessons and teaching go, but I am journaling (apparently that's not a word) everyday after work (which reminds me I need to do that!) to reflect on the day and learn from it. It'll be a while before the kids and I have settled into a nice routine/schedule, but we'll get there and I cannot believe the improvement I've seen in all of them since we began last Monday.

I was running in adrenaline/excitement all of last week, and by Friday morning, I could barely get out of bed because I was so exhausted. I never knew how much extra time teachers put in before and after work, but man, I've been working my butt off! My 'teacher brain', as I like to call it, has been going non-stop since I found out I got this job. I can't turn it off. I'm constantly thinking of what I could do better, how I should approach a student, what's a fun way to learn this?, etc. But that's how I'm going to learn and be a better teacher for my students.
LOVE my job, I go in with a smile on my face everyday, and I wouldn't have it any other way!

Just wanted to update you on how the first week and a half has been going. To sum it up: Fun and exhausting! :-)
I'll leave you with a picture my principal took of me the first day (in the afternoon) and sent to my uncle who works in the district, with the caption: "Lol! I told her this was a forced smile...she is feeling super exhausted...the joys of being a first year teacher..."

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Back in the Saddle!

I finally got my butt out of my classroom and off the couch, and finally went running tonight...and man, did it feel good! The hardest part is always just getting myself to do's like I forget how much better it makes me feel. Tim went with me on his roller blades which encouraged me to run more than walk. I only walked about 1/2 block total. We only went about 1.4 miles (6 blocks), but it was a good start. I'm going to try to get back into my 'on two, off one' day routine again with one more run tomorrow evening. I even registered myself for another 5K to motivate myself to stay healthy and keep running! AND, I got Tim to register too so we'll be running it together!  It is a little less than a month away on Sunday, September 16th, and I'm looking forward to it! :-) (Anyone available that morning to please take some pictures for us, I'd really appreciate it!)

In other news, Monday is the first day of school!!! I am SUPER excited for it! I thought I'd be much more nervous, but I'm least not yet. I've still got a little bit of work to get done in my classroom before the kids come, so I'll be in there for a few hours tomorrow and I'll take updated pictures.
Thursday afternoon we had a Kindergarten Open House where the students and families came in to meet their teacher and drop off any supplies. I was able to meet about 1/2 of my students and their families which was really cool. It was very relaxed and it made me very excited for Monday when I'm able to meet all of my students! :)

Thursday, August 9, 2012


That's how I'm feeling right now!!! Nervous. Excited. Anxious. Overwhelmed. Excited. Little bit more nervous. 

I cannot believe how fast this past week and a half has gone by! A huge thank you to everyone that helped us in our moving process. It was quite stressful for me the morning of the move because we literally had to pack everyone's vehicles full to fit everything (and we still didn't get everything), but we made it and that's all that matters. We've been in our house for almost a week now and we're slowly settling in. Up until this afternoon, our refrigerator and stove were in our living room....Tim was laying tile floors in the kitchen, so now we have our appliances where they belong so we were able to unpack the rest of the kitchen boxes this evening. :-) Clutter, mess, and disorganization make me very uneasy/crabby, so I'm feeling much more relaxed now that more things are organized. Garbage day is also tomorrow, so we were able to put lots of stuff on the curb = less clutter in the house!

Besides unpacking and settling into our house, I've also spent a ton of time in my classroom this week! I've met a few of the other teachers and actually got to be on the interview committee to find me an assistant. It was interesting being on the other side of that process, especially since I was just on the opposite side a couple months ago! I've done a lot of work in my room this week and it's finally starting to look like a classroom! I still have several things to do (organize my class library, finish bulletin boards, laminating...) so I'll be trying to manage my time wisely over the next week. Monday-Wednesday I have all day New Teacher Orientation meetings, Thursday is a teacher work day and our Open House (get to meet the kinders and their parents, and the students drop off their supplies) and Friday is a district-wide Rally and then a teacher work day....then the following Monday is the first day of school! Yikes! It's coming up quick. Here a few of the latest pictures of my classroom - I've completely rearranged and added some color to the room by getting some of my bulletin boards done:
Tim playing in the books/puzzles/games area :-)
The view from my desk/group table. I put the rug in the front of
the classroom instead of along side where I originally thought I
wanted it. I really like it this way!

Word Wall - this is where we'll be posting all of the words
we're learning to read this year

The side board where the calendar/schedule will be posted.
Here's a view of a couple of the bulletin boards I've done so far.
As I mentioned, I still have a lot to do but it's a huge difference from when I first saw the room. And with all of this going on, I haven't missed a treatment. :-) They've been getting done much later in the evening than typical for me, but that's just because I don't have a routine yet. On the other hand, I haven't gone running at all. I'm just constantly on the move between my classroom set-up and unpacking at home, I honestly don't even feel like going. I might try to get out there tomorrow and take advantage of the break in the heat....but don't hold me to it. My parents are also coming to visit this weekend, so I doubt I'll go then. I really hope that once school starts and I'm in more of a routine that I can get back out there. That's about all for now. Gotta get my rest for House Calls tomorrow -- showing up at new families' houses welcoming them to our school...should be interesting. :-)

Tuesday, July 31, 2012


The other day I was looking at my other pages on my blog (goals, heath stats, compliance, etc) and I realized a few things:

  • I have met two of my goals this summer: Completed a 5K and I got my first teaching job! Woo hoo!
  • I'm also getting pretty close to "making exercise a normal part of my routine". I'm still working towards this one because I did slack off a bit after my 5K in June, but I've been doing really good the past couple weeks with running two days, then resting one day.
  • On July 31st, 2011 - one year ago today - I started my 100% compliance. Although in March I forgot to bring some nebulizers on a weekend trip, I have not missed one treatment otherwise - which means that I have completed all of my treatments for 363 out of the past 364 days.                                                   That's 726 treatments = 363 hours = 21,780 minutes = 99.73% of my treatments over the past year! Pretty darn close to 100%! I have to say I'm pretty proud of myself for accomplishing this! I hope that on March 5th, 2013 I am able to say that 99.73% will turn into a definite 100%!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Little Bit of This, Little Bit of That

Not much to report here. It's one week til move in day and I cannot believe it! I feel like these past few weeks have flown by, but I'm getting excited. We have several of our friends willing to make the three hour hike with us to help us move into our new place, which is awesome. And, of course we're moving on the one day of the year that the town is having it's 'celebration' so the main street through town will be closed - but we'll manage!

I was able to visit my classroom this past week and my friend and I made some great progress organizing and moving some furniture around despite it being at least 95 degrees in my room! (No air conditioning...) I decided to get rid of my teacher desk because it was taking up useless space and we organized my curriculum books that I have so far. It's not too much of a noticeable change to an outsider (probably just looks messier compared to the last pictures I posted), but I feel like we got a lot done. There is still a TON to do and I'll have the whole week after we move to get my classroom set up. The week after that will be filled with New Teacher Orientations, PBIS workshops, Institute Days, and an Open House for the Kindergarten families to meet the teachers and see their classroom! :-) The first day of school will be here before I know, I'm sure, and I've got lots of nerves and excitement running through me already!

View from the door - straight ahead where the fan is will be my 'desk'/group table.
The cubbies behind it will be for my teacher supplies. There's also the huge pile
of boxes from everything that we organized/stored. 
I've been keeping up pretty well with my running. I went three times this week - running/walking about three miles each time. This week I should go Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday. Honestly, I'll probably miss Saturday's run since that's the morning we're moving. I'm sure I'll get quite the workout Friday and Saturday loading/unloading the moving truck and everything. But I'll keep pushing myself to do the best I can to be the healthiest I can.

I don't know if I'll post anymore until the big move. If not, then I'll be more than excited to (and I'll have much more to write about, I'm sure) post after we are all settled into our new home. :-)

Friday, July 20, 2012

14 Days and Counting

Two more weeks til the big move! I can't believe it. I apologize to my readers about not posting for a while, it's been a little hectic around here lately and there hasn't been much to write about. We've been starting to clean and pack up our current place while Tim's still working close to 50 hours a week and I was doing summer school and getting things together for my classroom.
Today was the last day of summer school, so I have the next two weeks completely free to finish getting everything washed, cleaned, organized, and packed while Tim's working.

As far as my commitment to exercise since my last post, I've failed. I think I've gone running two or three times since then, including tonight. It has been so disgustingly hot out that I just cannot haven't forced myself to get out there. I did check with the gym across the street, but they do not have open gym hours during the summer due to the kids camp they have going on everyday. I've got two weeks to turn myself around before we move. Since I literally have nothing planned, I have NO excuses now. So here's my new plan: Run two days, rest one day, run two days, rest one day, etc. That way I can have a 'schedule' so I'm not just randomly running whenever I feel like it. So tonight was my first run, so tomorrow morning I'll be out again. Then I'll rest on Sunday and be back at it Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday -- I'll most likely go in the morning so that I hopefully miss the heat. I'm not going to go crazy with making sure I run all three miles of my route, but doing lots of alternating to get my legs and lungs back in shape like they were a month ago! 

Finally, I've filled out at least 40 pages of paperwork for my new job and I'll be 'officially' approved by the Board next week. I've been in my classroom to drop some of my materials off, and I'll be going down one more time before we move to meet with the Teacher Mentor Coordinator. While filling out the pages of paperwork, among it was my insurance information. I will still be able to attend my CF clinic in Chicago! I'm very excited about that even though it'll be a several hour drive, it's completely worth it to me. :-)

Again, I apologize for the boring post and the time it's been between posts, but there really hasn't been too much exciting stuff going on. At the end of next week I'll post some pictures of my classroom when I hopefully have it more decorated/organized! Til then, here's a sneak peek: 
View from the door
Yep, those are chalkboards - but I do have a whiteboard
to the right along the other wall and one behind my desk
you can see to the left.

Monday, July 2, 2012


I've been completely slacking on exercise since I ran my first 5K a couple weeks ago. I think I've gone running only two or three times since then which is pretty sad since I was running two or three times a week before it! I was running because I wanted to make myself healthy, but also because I wanted to achieve my goal of running a 5K. Now that I've achieved that goal, I feel like I have nothing to look forward to. I know this isn't true because I know that running makes me feel better and that it's great for my body, but I feel like my motivation isn't there anymore, and I don't like it.
I can give you plenty of excuses: the one I've been using most frequently and recently is that it's been 100 degrees outside and I DO NOT want to run in that heat and humidity. True. But, I could get up early and run when it's cooler, I could be doing more running and walking intervals, I could be going back to the gym that we live right across the street from!!
Another excuse is that I've been so busy and stressed since finding out about my new job and that we're going to have to move. True. But I'm actually only working 1/2 days now that it's summer school so I've got plenty of time. And, running helps me relieve stress.
Finally, as I mentioned above - I achieved my goal of a 5K, so what am I running for now? Uh, my health, DUH! I've really let this one get away from me over the past couple weeks. I think with seeing my lung function stay the same, it kind of got me down about running. But I can't forget how much better I've felt since I've regularly started running.

But instead of sucking it up, I've let those excuses get the best of me. Not anymore. Today I read a post from a fibro's (male w/ CF) wife about getting back into the groove of exercising that's exactly what I need to be doing.

New plan of action: Take advantage of the gym across the street (especially before we have to move away from it)!!! Starting this week, I am planning on using the gym to exercise. Maybe I'm a little burnt out on running, so I might try to switch it up a little and use the elliptical for a while. Not exercising isn't going to keep my lung function stable, let alone increase it. I have absolutely no excuse that I can't fit at least 30 minutes of exercise into my schedule two or three times a week.

I'm hoping that with this post I'll be able to hold myself responsible with keeping up with exercising.

Honestly, if I "can't" do it now because I'm stressed about starting my job and moving, what's going to happen when we do move and I do start my job? Am I just going to give up and let my hard work go to waste? I can't let that happen. I need to keep myself healthy. So, if you think of it, please help me stay in line with keeping myself healthy by asking me when was the last time I went to the gym/exercised. NO excuses.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Eat More & Keep Running

That's what I've taken away from my doctors appointment today. I've been feeling fantastic lately: lots of energy, been coughing up way more mucus than I thought I could possibly have in my lungs (sorry, TMI) from all of my running, less bloating/stomach issues...all around very good! So I was anxious for my doctors appointment today to see if my PFTs would reflect the way I feel....of course they don't! They weren't bad, but they weren't 90 like I wanted.

My current FEV1 is 85% which is only slightly up from last time so it's considered 'unchanged' which is a good thing. As long as it's not going down, then we're good to go. My doctor and the guy who did the PFTs with me both told me that it's good that I'm not going down and I know they're right, it's just frustrating that I've been working so hard at running that I was expecting a bigger result. I was able to give a big sputum sample (sorry again for TMI) today which typically isn't me but I explained to her how I'm getting so much more up from all of my exercise and she was very happy about that. She said that being in the mid-80s could just be my baseline and that anything from 80-120 (someone please explain to me how you can have over 100% lung function) is considered normal so she's very please with where I'm at. I'm not mad about where I'm at because I feel excellent and that's what matters

My weight has gone down to 115lbs but we contributed that to the added exercise and burning calories, so I need to continue stuffing my face - even more than I do - so that I can add a few more pounds back on. It seems like, from looking back at my health stats, that 122lbs would be a good goal for me so that's what I'll shoot for. Any suggestions on how to keep weight on while exercising would be excellent. :-)

We also discussed my new job and that Tim and I have to move and depending on my insurance, my goal is to continue going to this clinic. I do NOT want to leave because I love my doctor and nurse, and I'm willing to make the trip as long as insurance allows it. I'll know more about this in a couple months once I get all of the new stuff straightened out. 

So, overall I'm going to keep running at least two miles 2-3 days a week and increase my calorie intake to hopefully gain a few more pounds before my next visit this fall. I'd say that's a pretty good visit. :-)

Monday, June 25, 2012

Complete 180!

I cannot believe how much our world has changed in the past week! It's beginning to sink in that I'll have my own classroom in the fall, but it's also crazy how much we need to do between now and then.
*Find a place to live -- kind of tricky when we live so far away
*Pack -- ewww, I hate packing! Anyone have any extra boxes??
*Set up my classroom -- The best part!!!
*Find a new CF doctor...possibly -- I'm going to my CF clinic this Thursday, so we'll be talking then - more to come on that later this week.
*Help Tim find a job
*Figure out new insurance, transfer prescriptions to local pharmacy, etc.

I felt like a huge weight was lifted off my shoulders when I found out I got the job, but now it's all of these extra things that make me feel a little weighed down again. But at the same time, I'm so excited so it's kind of like a happy stress....if there is such a thing. :-)

Oh, I've also been kind of really slacking on my running this week. It's been so crazy, and really hot, that I just haven't forced myself to get back out there after my 5K. Finally, this evening it was gorgeous outside I made myself go for a run and it felt great! I started off walking because I had a cramp in my left side, so I walked the first mile, but then Kelly Clarkson's "What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Stronger" came on and I just had to run! I ended up running about another two miles on top of the one I walked and my legs didn't even hurt! I think I am finally getting stronger and building up some endurance! :) As I mentioned above I have my next clinic appointment on Thursday, so I'm trying to get all the calories I can get and get as much mucus out of my lungs as possible. I'm very anxious to see what my PFTs look like on Thursday!

And now for the best, most exciting, part of my post! My friend Kristen and I went to a sidewalk sale at a teacher store today - the first time I've been to a teacher store as a real teacher! - and everything outside was 50% off! WOO HOO! Here's what I got:

Bulletin board boarders, cute little reading posters for my reading area,
an awesome plan book, literacy centers book, cute card game (good center),
and name tags that I can put their picture on (great for learning everyone's name)
The basic necessities
Again, more basics
I saw this and had to get it! I just love it!
Great way to teach the kids nice things to say
to their friends instead of always 'good job'. 
My sideways alphabet. Don't know why it's turned this way & don't know how to fix it, sorry.
It's called "Amusing Animals Alphabet" because the pictures are silly, but it has
an animal to go with each letter and it's colorful. :)
This came with the alphabet, little alliteration stories to go with each letter.
I don't think I'll put these up on the wall, but they'll be fun to read together. 
And this was my big splurge! It's called "morning meeting solution"
and comes with calendar, weather, 100 chart, place value for how many days of school,
shapes, colors, and a couple other little posters = AWESOME!
Can't wait to put it all together and hang it up. I need to get lots of Velcro for all of it!
And this is my second favorite thing I bought today! It's a
welcome sign for my classroom door! The frogs are so hilarious!
It comes with all of these cut outs. I'd like mine to say "Welcome to
Mrs. Veitengruber's Kindergarten Class" but I'll probably
change my mind a million times. 
I'm super excited about everything I bought today! And it was all 50% off!! So it looks like I'm not going to have a specific theme for my room, but I guess I would consider it fun and colorful! I feel like I got a lot of good basics today and don't plan on buying much of anything else until I'm in my classroom and see what I have and what I still need. I can't wait to hang all of this up and I will for sure be taking pictures once it's all put together. Only 57 more days til the first day of Kindergarten! :-)

Sunday, June 24, 2012

It's Been a Long Time Coming!!!


On Monday, June 18th I interviewed for a Kindergarten position in a school district about three hours south of where we currently live. I left the interview feeling amazing and telling myself that THIS is where I want to work and if I didn't get this job I was going to be crushed! Less than 24 hours later, the principal of the school was calling me to tell me that he was putting my paperwork into the HR department and that he'd like to offer me the position! I couldn't be more excited!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Being in that school just felt right and on my three hour drive back I was picturing myself in their building as a teacher. I'm not going to lie, I've just about pictured myself in every building after I left, just to see how it felt, but there was something about this one....I just wanted it more.

After graduating two years ago and spending the last two years applying for 100s of jobs in many different states, and being a teaching assistant for two years, my time has finally come. I don't have a lot of details just yet, but I do know that I will be teaching Kindergarten, full day, in a pretty awesome elementary school with amazing staff. I do know the first day of school (which will be a full day - yikes!) is Monday, August 20th and the week prior will be New Teacher Orientation and Institute Days.

I can't wait to start going through my boxes labeled 'teaching stuff' that have just been sitting in our basement collecting dust. I can't wait to get a new teacher wardrobe! I can't wait to get in my classroom to organize and decorate --- don't worry, I'll be posting plenty of pictures! After my interview on Monday, I did get a tour of the school and I was able to see my classroom, which of course made me want the position even more. I was already giving myself ideas on my drive home Monday night. Now, I've finally got a Pinterest account and I can make those ideas into a reality for my classroom! :-) I do know that I will have lots of bulletin board space, chalk boards (hopefully stores still sell chalk ;)) and a Promethean Board.

That means that this summer Tim, Archie (our cat) and I will have to pack up and find a new place to live. I'm really excited to be starting a new chapter in our lives, but I am extremely sad to leave all of the wonderful people that I've worked/taught with for the past two years, plus all of our friends in the area. We will be much closer to almost all of Tim's family which I'm very excited about, and now we'll be making trips up north to see all of my family when the time comes.

It's going to be a crazy-busy summer with being an assistant in special education summer school and now getting prepared for my new job, and moving three hours away, but I couldn't be more excited with the way things are turning out. I guess it's true: Good things come to those who wait... (But if you told me that a week ago, I would have rolled my eyes as I was applying for more jobs.)

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Feelin' on Top of the World!

Today, I am able to cross one of my goals off my list! I completed my first 5K without stopping to walk, in just over 35 minutes!!!

It's official: Runner #196
I will admit, I was extremely nervous before I first started because I have been working towards this goal for months! I arrived about 15 minutes before start time, got all registered, then just hung out with Tim until the race began. There were three sections to choose from for where to line up: competitive runners, recreational runners, and walkers. I chose the second section because my personal goal was to just finish the race without stopping to walk.

There were over 750 registered runners and walkers - kids from 5 years old to adults in their 50s and 60s, it was so cool! When the gun went off to begin I was ready to go! Unfortunately there were a ton of people in the way so the start was slow. But once I was going for a few minutes, it seemed to thin out a little and I was able to find a steady pace for myself. I got the chills running past people who were clapping and cheering us on, it was such an amazing feeling!

There were several people in the neighborhood we ran through that had sprinklers and hoses going into the street, so I ran through as many of those as I could. I also grabbed two cups of water along the way - but it is very hard to drink water while running, so I kind of just splashed it on my face and kept going.

There was not once along the route where I felt the need to walk! My legs never hurt the entire time! I definitely fed off the energy of everyone around me and I was just so proud of myself for doing this! It was such an amazing experience and what a great feeling it was coming around that track knowing that I was going to finish feeling excellent. When I finished I wasn't completely out of breath or hurting - I felt like I could have gone around the track another time or two! Needless to say, I'm very proud of myself for accomplishing my goal today and I'm look forward to finding another local 5K to complete this summer. :-)
Crossing the finish line!!