Tuesday, July 29, 2008

I'm Addicted

Okay, I finished the whole TWILIGHT series within ten days. Is that a strange record somewhere? My sleep time definitely suffered, as I usually started around 10 p.m. and couldn't put the dang books down! So, like every other 14-17 year-old girl, I have put in my pre-order for BREAKING DAWN, but I refuse to go to the party from 10- midnight this Friday! ha ha. My YA friend, Jennifer, said she read the series but just "wanted her [Bella] to choose the werewolf and get on with it." She did acknowledge that she is in the minority....I, on the other hand, have been scouring the web for info about the movie and I was delighted to find out that the hunky guy who played Cedric Diggory in HP movies is playing Edward! I just hope he and Kristin Stewart have some on screen chemistry or the whole thing isn't going to work for me. I feel like a teenager doing this stuff! I even went to cafepress.com to search "Edward Cullen" and I found PAGES of t-shirts, etc. My favorite is the one that says simply "I love Edward". I could actually get away with that one because my husband is named Edward as well. Who'd a thunk I'd love a silly vampire series so much!?

Meanwhile, on the homefront, I feel like I am swimming in a million half-completed projects from gardening to sewing to painting to school shopping. I pretty much made a mess out of Laurie Halse Anderson's writing challenge because I was only writing every few days, if that. But, she did post a "forgiveness" entry on her blog that made me feel better. How come I can't seem to get a routine going during the summer? I should start thinking about fall and teaching, but I am still trying to plan our last vacation the week before I return to work. I DID manage to get the small table and chairs repainted and varnished for the twins. But, I started that project last May. I am also trying desperately to get rid of a woodchuck/groundhog who thinks that I have planted zucchini just for his munching benefit!

Monday, July 14, 2008

I'm so BEHIND!

So, I feel like I'm the last one to read Stephenie Meyers' Twilight. But, at the coercion of a Barnes and Noble employee (of all people) I brought it with me to Indianapolis on our visit and DEVOURED it. No pun intended. I made the kids have one hour of "quiet reading time" today so I could finish it. And, even though I have about five copies of New Moon in my classroom, I can't get to any of them due to construction, so I'll give Stephenie more of my money and purchase it tomorrow. I can't wait to get started, even though I've read a million lit. logs on the series and I think I know the basic plot.

On the way to Indy I finished FOUND by Margaret Peterson Haddix and really loved it. I can't wait for the next book. How interesting that she managed to write such a good science fiction novel for young adults with the historical twist at the end. I love historical fiction and can't wait for the next one. I'm dying to see how she structures it! Historical science fiction?

Even though my patience for the twins was incredibly SHORT today, we managed to make an awesome cake a la Pioneer Woman. You HAVE to try out these recipes! http://thepioneerwoman.com/#tab2

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Bad Writer Girl!

I just realized that my blog address is spelled incorrectly! Yikes! The English Teacher. Sucketh.

I didn't get my 15 minutes of writing in yesterday because I was making this GREAT Amy Butler bag with my friend, Christy. She is starting a cool business, called TaaDaa, where you can go and make a craft and everything is there waiting for you! My pattern was all cut out and the fusible interfacing was applied. All I did was follow her directions and sew! It took 2 hours and it looks awesome! She's local in Michigan (Ann Arbor), but here's her cool website. http://tadaastudio.com/
Pictures to follow later when I figure out how to upload them from my camera onto the computer.

I need a way to find the True Goodness in the twins. They "sandwiched" me last night in bed and then awoke at 5:00 a.m. and weren't going to take naps, but I "convinced" them otherwise. I zonked on the couch this morning after we all watched 'SHREK THE THIRD' on On Demand. I don't know how their little bodies do it, but I know I should be so grateful for what I have. I was reminded of this when I read the blog for yesterday from Two Writing Teachers. One of my favorites! I hope I have it listed on the side.... Check out their writing challenges as well. My students love them. ttp://twowritingteachers.wordpress.com/2008/07/08/sols-bedtime-ice-cream/

Monday, July 7, 2008

Writing Challenge a la Laurie Halse Anderson

Check out the writing challenge that Laurie Halse Anderson has given everyone for the month of July. Even though I am late coming to it, it gives me real motivation to write SOMETHING.


Recent Reading

Well, I have finished The Adoration of Jenna Fox, Before I Die and Greetings From Nowhere. It seems as if I am constantly going back to the library to pick up a hold or two. Of the three, my favorite would have to be Before I Die with Jenna Fox coming in a close second. The characters in both of these books really touched me in different ways; Tessa, because of her bravery and bluntness and Jenna because she was kept in the dark for so long. I really loved, loved, loved the ending of Before I Die because I think Downham really captured the essence of what it means for a teenager to pass on. I loved the way it was written in sparser and sparser prose.

As for Greetings From Nowhere, it was a sweet book, mostly for tweens or my Boo who is 8. They were all characters with great stories, but the ending was quite predictable. My heart went out to Aggie and I loved how she talked to her dead husband in the tomatoes. The naivete of Willow almost distracted me from the prose, but I guess that's why it's considered a tween kind of novel. It was written up on many blogs (Jen Robinson http://jkrbooks.typepad.com/blog/ and Professor Nana http://professornana.livejournal.com/ to name a few) so I guess I expected more. Perhaps after the other two YA books I read, this one was disappointing in comparison.

What I REALLY need to do now that July is here is start reading some of my "Teacher Books" like Deeper Reading and Reading Reasons, both by Kelly Gallagher (who I just found out is a guy-not that is matters)

Boo and I continue to read Sea of Monsters which is the second book in the Percy Jackson/Olympians series by Rick Riordan. I am amazed at how Boo can pick up on the mythology even though she's only 8 and hasn't studied it at all. I had to explain Tantalus to her and then she giggled each time he reached for food or drink and it escaped him. Quick learner.