Sunday, July 27, 2008

I've got it.

I got the job! I am officially a Kindergarten teacher!!!

I got the call Friday afternoon- hours after Jane called me.

I am thrilled!

If any of you have Kindergarten experience or ideas, please let me know. I've also been talking with a few parents of young children to see what they liked or disliked that their children's teachers have done. Any advice is strongly welcomed.

Thanks for all your prayers and support. I'll continue to keep you updated on the progress of things!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Either you've got it, or you don't.

I was at work today and felt my phone vibrating in my pocket. I looked at the number and saw 436-... and knew it was the district office. I answered and heard, "Heather? Hi, this is Jane from the benefits and human resources department at the district office. You've been hired to be a new teacher?" (note the question.)

My heart started to flutter, "Really?! What grade level?"

She paused. "Didn't someone call you?"

" Not that I know of..." knowing full well that I had been watching my phone all day waiting for a call.

"Oh no. Well, you're on my list,, can you hold on just a minute? Don't go anywhere..."

Hold music hummed through the phone as I stood behind the counter on my cell phone, stomach bouncing. I don't like to be on my phone at work, but no one was in the store, so I waited. Just then, I looked up and saw two smoothie girls bee-lining it straight for the doors. I was forced to hang up. I guess district office lady might think that we were disconnected, but I had no choice!

Anyway, she called back and left a message and when I returned the call, she said that she was trying to find Kay, the head honcho who tells everyone if they have a job or not. I'm still waiting for the call. I told her that waiting on something like that dangling in front of me would be pretty tough over the weekend. She laughed and agreed and said that she'd try to find our lady before the end of the day.

For now, I'm waiting. I'm watching for a vibrating phone on the table....and trying to keep myself busy in the meantime. :)

Thanks to all of you who have called or written to check up on the progress. I'll post as soon as I hear something.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Draw near to God and HE will draw near to you. (james 4:4)

It seems that in the past 15 hours, the Lord has been moving mountains in our favor. Nate and I went shopping last night *again* in search of a wedding band for me. We've been looking for months- pretty much since he proposed- to no avail. Many of you have heard or seen our frustrations and it seemed like everywhere we went, they had the same wrong rings. I was starting to feel defeated. "We're going to look at wedding rings" was not a statement of joy, but rather one heavy laden with the negativity that usually accompanies losing.

So, we set out again last night. The only reason this outing was enjoyable to start with was the fact that Nate was there. It's a strange thing in love- the way simply being with him makes my world seem less chaotic, more doable, less threatening. Life's winds can be whirling around us in a million different directions, but when I'm with Nate, we're able to find a calm. I love that.

It was the 4th and final store for the evening. We had 45 minutes until the mall closed and I'd heard, "Oh honey, let me clean your ring for you," three times already. (I don't think my ring has been this clean yet!) We explained what we were looking for and ran into the same situations as all the stores before. My shoulders fell farther with each passing minute and I began to think that our options were to a) leave defeated for the night and try it all again next week to see if anyone had magically ordered in my "perfect ring" or b) custom make something that was going to cost thousands of dollars to make. I was not OK with the latter.

Natalie, the young woman who was helping us, was very patient and listened to exactly what we wanted. We visited and tried ring after ring next to mine. At some point, I think it was Nate who suggested getting two separate bands- one for each side of my engagement ring. We tried a couple of channel set princess cut bands, but they just seemed too bulky.

Natalie leaned into the case, "Now I'm not sure if you'll even like this, BUT...." She brought out two very thin, very sparkling bands and placed one on each side.

I fell head over heels for it.

"Yes. I love it. This is it."

I think Nate let out a sigh of relief that could have blown little Natalie over, had she not been prepared. "This is the first time I've seen her smile like this since we've started looking for a band..."

Needless to say, we were both relieved, exhausted, ecstatic, hopeful, thrilled, etc. We went home with twins, two shiny, sparkling rings in two matching boxes, with two matching grins, knowing we had found the perfect fit.

We came home to great news about a wonderful couple of friends who are moving back here after years in Kentucky.

I woke up to a phone call from a dear, dear friend in Japan. It was so good to hear his voice.

I have an interview today at the school I want to be teaching at. I want to be part of their team. I want to be the new young teacher who is still hopeful and energized about teaching. The one who feels like she can take on the world and move every child in her classroom. I want to encourage other teachers, be the one who people say, "there's just something about her".... the one who is used as a tool to bring light and encouragement, hope, laughter, a fresh point of view....and also the one to learn from teachers who are amazing; teachers who have been there for years and know the ropes like the back of their hand. I want to learn from them. I want to grow for knowing them. I want to be part of a team. I want to be part of their team.

If you're praying today, please remember me at 1:30....

On a lighter note, I haven't uploaded photos to my computer for a REALLY long time.'s time to play catch up. Here are some photos from the 4th July.... (I know, seems like forever ago).Nate and I were flossing our teeth after eating BBQ ribs....we're very classy people. :)
Playing with sparklers.

I LOVE him.

Mom, Nancy and I got our toes done and then met Amber and Rissa for my dress fitting. Then we went to Olive Garden.
My girls. Mom, Nancy, Rissa, & Amber
Our toes.
Here's my brother and my dad at a wedding in Norfolk. Aren't they sweet?

We've been doing some boating this summer. My roommate, John, bought a boat a month or so ago. This day we were enjoying snow peas from dad's garden....

He's so stinkin' cute....

John and Renae
Thanks for sticking through such a LONG post......

God is good. He takes great care of us.....and it seems that things just seem to fall into place once you refocus on Him.

My cup overflows.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Come again?!

My mom requested a recipe from ME!!! It's actually from Martha, but I made it for my parents the last time they came to stay with me. It's a great breakfast casserole.... and since she requested it, I thought I'd share it with the rest of you as well. Have at it!

Baked Egg Casserole

16 oz. shredded hash browns (simply potatoes)- not frozen
9-10 eggs
salt & pepper
8 oz. shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 pint whipping cream or 1/2 & 1/2
1/4 c. chopped onion
1/4 c. green pepper
1 lb. sausage, bacon, or ham- cooked

Heat oven to 350.
Spray 9 x 13 in. pan
Line pan with hash browns
Crack eggs on top of hash browns and break yolks- do not scramble.
Season with salt & pepper
add 1/2 cheese
pour cream over layers
Sprinkle onion, green pepper, meat and remaining cheese
Bake 40 minutes or until firm. Will get firmer as it sits.

*Can make the night before and refrigerate. Add about 10 minutes cook time if refrigerated.

Monday, July 21, 2008

if you only would be to show me how you feel...

Who misses THIS song?!

wouldn't it be nice....

There's so much going on now- with wedding plans, summer events, conflicting work's been a crazy, crazy summer.

For those of you who are waiting to hear, have an interview on Thursday. !!!!! I'm so excited, but trying not to let my mind go racing into a classroom just yet. I have 2 "new teacher" books on Amazon- ready to be ordered, but I'm making myself wait until I have the interview and have a better feel for what this fall will hold.

The interview is at a school I really like- probably my favorite in Lincoln. The job is for either Kindergarten or 1st grade- levels that are much lower than I had anticipated myself teaching, but I know that I need to get my foot in the door. I've had some really encouraging feedback from other teachers at the school, and other people who know the principal well. They've given me hope, but again, I don't want to get my teaching supplies loaded up in the car until I have the go-ahead. If you're the praying kind, please remember me this week- as I go into the interview- that I would be prepared and confident, and just what they're looking for.

I'm quickly becoming overwhelmed with the tornado of events that are beginning to pick up speed. I know that this fall is going to be BUSY- and I'm already beginning to feel a bit batty. Today, anyway. Maybe tomorrow will look different.

We're having trouble finding a matching wedding band for my engagement ring. Nate had it custom made to be exactly what he wanted- and I LOVE my stubbornness to keep my original band is proving to make the wedding band search more difficult. I've told these things to probably 15 jewelers in Lincoln: "Euro-shank, white gold, cathedral, channel, princess cut.... yap, yap, yap..." I wish someone would just have the right price, right shape, right weight, right setting....with a big giant flag waving, "HEATHER'S RING".

Wouldn't that be nice?

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Keep yo' hands off, Mister.

Today I was hugged by a man.

Brook and I were sitting at the surfboard table at our little coffee shop and a 40-something male came in. He resembled a gray bear. As he inched his way in the door and came closer to the table, I slid off my chair to help him. I started toward the front counter and he stepped in my way, put his arm around me and proceeded to give me a good squeeze. It was awkward. It was really awkward. I glanced over my shoulder to look at Brook as I weaseled my way out of his hold, and found her chuckling to herself on the other side of the table.

I've never seen him before in my life. I think he needed a shower.

The rest of my experience with him was like nearly every other customer. He ordered. He paid. I made the drink. I gave him the drink. He said "thank you". He walked away.

Sunday, July 13, 2008


I think I just helped the whiniest man on this side of 9th street.

He was about 30. He came in with a beautiful young woman. As they walked in the door I heard him squeal, "I'm so hungry".

As he perused our pastry case, he picked up a sandwich out of the cooler- all of which are properly marked to display what kind of sandwich they are, what type of bread they are on, and the different toppings that will be found on any particular sandwich.

"What kind of sandwich is this," he asks me.
"Well, it should say on the front. That one looks like turkey on wheat"
"Oh. How much?"
To this price, he tisks.
"Do you have bagels?"
"Yes. There are two right there", pointing to the obvious plate right in front of him holding two cinnamon raisin bagels.
"I want a plain bagel".
"Well, we only have cinnamon raisin".
"You don't have a plain bagel"?
"But it's Sunday".
"Yes, I realize that".
"But it's Sunday, you should have plain bagels."
"Well sir, that's all we have left from the day. It is 7:30pm. All the other bagels are sold by now".
"But I want a plain bagel with cream cheese. Where can I get one"
"I suppose you could go to Brueggers on 11th and Q"
"11th & Q- just three blocks that way"
"THREE blocks?!"
"I thought you wanted a plain bagel really bad. That's where you can get one".
"ugh. What about these muffins?"

So, I'll spare you the rest of the dialogue. In short, he whined for another couple of minutes. He asked for coffee with free refills. I told him I'd give him a "to-stay" mug and he could have his first refill for free. He complained when I told him the price. He said yesterday it was cheaper. I said, no it wasn't. He then continued to make his lady friend microwave his muffin for him, and asked me to put steamed milk in his coffee. I did. When I took it to him, he complained that the Internet didn't reach through the windows to the patio outside. I assured him that it did. He insisted that the glass was too strong for the Internet to go through. I thought to myself- "this guy is a moron". His cute little friend stood back and smiled politely as she knew he was being ridiculous, but was not surprised in the least. This must be common behavior for him.

I'm so glad I'm marrying Nate. He knows that Internet can go through glass. And he's OK with cinnamon raisin bagels. :)

Whirling in Tool

I think it's fine time I add another post. We've had a busy couple of weeks- here are some highlights:

* Diablo Dr. block party 2008!
* Trip with Nate to N-town to visit mom & dad
* My cousin Casey's wedding reception back home
* 4th of July celebration at my parents' house with lots of family and friends
* A day of GIRLS in L-town with Mom, Nancy, Rissa & Bam which included coffee, wedding planning, pedicures, new purses, wedding planning, dress fittings, Olive Garden, more wedding planning, and sand volleyball
* another drive to mom & pop's with my big bro, James
* Going to the Talsma parents' house TWICE in a week
* selling coffee every now and then
* lots of sewing
* dog-sitting for a ratty little pup named Jax. He's tiny. He's not house-trained. And my roommate agreed to watch him. He's leaving soon. I need to buy new make-up brushes- mine were chewed up this week by a mangy little mutt. :(

I've got to run. This week I'm working on being more intentional with my quiet times. Life and planning for a wedding .....I've allowed them to keep me busy enough to not take time out for QT's. No good. This week, I will be more intentional. I challenge you to do the same.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

A little bit of heat

Some of you know that we took our engagement photos a week ago. We drove to good ol' GI to meet with the photographer and had an absolutely fabulous time with him. We've been anxiously awaiting the new photos- but generally it takes a week or two to get them fixed up and ready for viewing. Lane sent us an email last night with a link to his blog. Here's two of the photos he took. These are the only two we've seen posted so far- but we're really happy with them.
It was the end of the day, we were hot and bug-bitten, sweaty from running around being ridiculously good-looking. (joke) We found this shower next to the lake and decided to see what kind of photos we could get. Here you have it.

Our photographer is fantastic. Spread the love, people, and check out his website.

He's so easy to work with- and we actually had fun! If you know anyone getting hitched, or anyone who needs a photographer for anything- I strongly recommend him. He's a good chicken.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008


Hey. That last post may not be funny to anyone but my mother and I. My apologies.

Here, hit THIS.

Brook and I were at work this morning and someone asked me what my wedding colors are. "Her culah's are blush and bashful", Brook chimed in with a southern draw. For those of you who haven't seen the movie, Steel Magnolias, you're missing out.

This movie always reminds me of my mom. We used to curl up and watch it on Lifetime about once a year. This is one of our favorite parts. We both love Weezer. We'd be sobbing and then laughing with tears running down our cheeks and Kleenex in hand.

So, here's to you, Mom!

And thanks, Brook, for reminding me of this great film. :)