Saturday, April 24, 2010

buy design

despite my previous depressing post on the current state of girls, life is pretty good at the Soup household. Mr. Soup is going to finish his first semester of grad school next month. I end my school year in June. I decided not to teach summer school (it was decided for me), but I am going to the AVID conference and Pre-AP training so I'll have some money coming in. I may get a part-time job just so that I can afford to buy some new furniture for our new home. more on that later.

i'm feeling better about not getting a new car. I figure this way I can save and get the car I really want and need. Plus, I don't need a new car right now. My car is in great condition (after shelling out $2500 to fix everything last year), but I do need new tires soon. Plus, the only reason I need a new car is the space. I just need a bigger car for the doggies, but oh well. I calculated it if I can save up $5,000 plus my trade-in, I should be able to get low payments and hopefully pay it off early. So, that is my plan. If I have that $5,000 by next year...great! If not, I'll wait until I do. Good things come to those who wait.

So we aren't moving for another month. I'm practicing acceptance and having faith that everything will work out for the best. I've been doing some online shopping (browsing...not buying). We will have an extra living room and dining room. I figure I'll work on getting the main living room some new furniture first if we can afford it. I found a really cute sectional that has storage and turns into a bed. I also found a cute cheap chair from IKEA for that room as well. I think we may also look at getting an LCD TV. Our main living room opens up to the breakfast area and kitchen, so I want to match that. My plates are navy, light blue, cream and khaki and I want to continue that scheme in the living room. maybe paint the wall a tan or khaki color. Our formal dining room and living room are connected. I plan to use our current living room furniture (which is black and green with some red) in the formal living room. I found a really cute black dining table. I think I may wait until the fall to purchase it though. gotta save up for these purchases! I'm posting some picks, so let me know what you think. I'm always looking for some good deals.

Friday, April 23, 2010

the current state of girls

as a junior high school teacher, I consider myself an insider into the minds of adolescent girls. well, not really an insider....just someone who spends insane amounts of time eavesdropping on conversations (and stopping the conversations) on boys, shopping, and other girls. I'm someone who picks up notes and scans it for drug use and sex and then tosses it. I used to not read notes, because I just didn't want to know. Now, I feel like if I don't know and don't do something, then I'm letting them down. which is dumb, I know. I've had girls come to me in tears over all kinds of things. sex. abuse. sexual abuse. It is awkward. It is uncomfortable. It is sad. It makes you mad. It is a little too weird for me. I think back to when I was thirteen and I was not this knowledable, yet ignorant.
Okay, so I'm going to school you on pre-teen girls. They're not like they used to be. When I was growing up, promiscuity was not the norm. In fact, most of my friends were not sexually active in high school, let alone junior high (I think I knew two girls who did in junior high). My parents used scare tactics to ensure that I would not have sex. And while I do not promote scare tactics, they actually worked. My dad was quick to point out that the thoughts expressed by rappers in their songs were actually true. The saddest part is that most of the girls don't respect themselves or their body. The issue isn't even them having sex, but with whom and how many. I just feel as though our generation of girls has this high level of disconnect. I think this entire generation does. There isn't really even a desire for a loving relationship.
Don't even get me started on Pregnancy and STDs. These girls are so uneducated and miseducated. I am all for sex ed. in schools. It's fine for the basics. Let's be honest those kids don't take those videos seriously. They're cheesy and gross. The kids are laughing the entire time. The real talks need to happen at home. Parents need to not only educate their kids on the inner workings of the body, contraceptives, etc. They also need to tell their children to respect their bodies. I don't think this conversation happens enough. I think our kids feel as though they want to give away their bodies, rather than preserve it. Kids are curious about sex and if parents don't talk to them, they are going to get wrong information. I'm not saying they won't have sex, but maybe, just maybe they'll enter healthy, monogamous sexual relationships later in life, rather than fumbling around with three or four guys at once at a young age. I also think a frank discussion needs to be had by all about what happens if a child (because 16 is a child no matter if you're a mom or not) get pregnant. I think many families don't talk to their kids about what happens if one chooses to raise the baby, give it up for adoption or have an abortion. They need to know what it looks like in all scenarios, how their religion and culture feels about it, and finally how the parents feel about it. The only exposure to pregnancy and teen parenthood they have is 16 & Pregnant on MTV. Let's be honest: the girls are spoiled brats who have it SOOOO easy! It's not accurate and I feel it actually encourages teen pregnancy or makes it seem okay.
Lastly, if you want to gain insight into the minds of teenage girls. I highly recommend two movies. The Babysitters and Towelhead. Both will make you extremely uncomfortable. But this is pretty much how it is. curious and detached basically sums up my report on the current state of girls. they are curious and they are detached.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

goals and headaches

Okay, so Mr. Soup and I were really close to closing on May 3rd (almost check on that goal)'s been pushed back. It's not a big deal, just an annoyance. We have everything set, but they need a month's worth of Mr. Soup's new pay stubs in his new position, so we have to wait on that. I just don't want to extend the closing date any longer....grrr....I hate not being in control and I feel like I'm losing control right now, you know? I just want the keys, damnit. Everything is going to be okay though. I have to have faith. God would not lead us this far and then close the door on it and if He did, there is good reason for it. I will not lie though...I'd be bummed. I absolutely love our new home.

So, Friday was my student-teacher's last day. It was always a goal of mine to have a student-teacher. I loved my student-teaching experience and I wanted to share that with someone. check on that goal. I don't pretend to know everything about teaching (especially not in the days of high-stakes testing), but I feel I do a pretty good job day in and day out. I think most students will say that my classroom is a lot of fun. However, I am pretty firm in my expecations. I expect my students to work hard and to treat each other with respect. Kids know that in Mrs. Soup's class if you act up, I will call you out or call your mama! In fact, I sometimes reference my students' moms in class. Here's an example: Little Joey is talking to his neighbor and drawing instead of working on an assignment. "Joey, I wonder what Tammy would think of these drawings and the fact that you have done none of your assignment, but talked to JEsse the entire time." Yeah, I know. I'm mean, but it works. Having a student-teacher reaffirmed for me that I do have good classroom management and that I strive to be fair.

One goal that I will have to put an uncheck next to is buying a new car. I planned to buy one in May 2011, but after Mr. Soup and I crunched numbers, it's just not possible. I don't have enough saved for a new car and I want to keep my payments under $300 a month. Since we desperately need a seven-seater SUV or crossover, we're looking at payments $350 and up. Even with a car two or three years old, we'd spend a pretty penny. So, i'm going to continue to save. I have a good amount saved now, but I plan to double it and maybe buy a new car in 2012 or 2013. It will be nice not to have a car payment for three years. With the extra money we're saving, we can afford to splurge and have the dogs stay at the Pet Lodge (they love it there! they are the most popular dogs there) when we take trips to Kansas.

Goals...Mr. Soup and I are back on track for eating healthy and losing weight the healthy way. We both increased our work-outs, cut our calorie intake. We've been making lots of smoothies for breakfast. I feel a lot better about how my body is changing. Even in the past week, I've noticed subtle, yet inspiring changes. I hope that after TAKS, I can devote even more time to the gym.

Monday, April 12, 2010

a little late...

the day I married my soulmate


Happy Anniversary

life with the campbells

okay, so I'm procrastinating. I don't wanna help Mr. Soup with his paper and I don't want to pack.....
Okay, so a lot has happened since I last updated our family blog. We are no longer newlyweds as we hit the one year mark on March 21st, 2010. It really feels good to have hit that mark. Our first year of marriage was unbelievable. I think if you asked me a year ago what I knew about my husband it would differ drastically from what I know about him now. We have been so blessed to have found each other and to spend our first year of marriage together successfully. That doesn't mean we haven't gone through our share of problems this year. I think we both did not realize how much of a toll his graduate school would take on both of us. I think this semester will be the most difficult semester because of his research class. But he'll be done with his master's in December 2010!
And being happy in marriage is great....until you start gaining the love-weight. Yep. I've packed on ten pounds....eek. Mr. Soup has gained some weight too! So today I started back on my calorie counting. This is what I did three years ago and I lost 20 pounds. I hope to lose the same amount. I did really good today and stayed under 1200 calories. I just need to maintain that at all times. I ate horribly at Easter and this past weekend, but I put it all behind me and I'm moving on to a new me!
Abby had her tonsillectomy. The surgery went well and so did her recovery. We're hopeful that the surgery will prevent her from getting sick as often and missing as much school as she has in the past. We are looking forward to her visiting us again this summer!
Okay, so the big news is that we are under contract for our first home! A month ago we started looking for homes and after visitng 8 homes we found the one. Well actually we found two, but one turned out to be the one. I am really proud to say that we stayed under our pre-approval price and we found a house that one of us could afford on our own, so that if one of us lost our jobs or decided to stay home we could. We also recieved some help with the down payment from a Texas teacher bond program and some generous family members. So, our out of pocket contribution has been minimal which is nice. We will also qualify for the first-time home-buyer tax credit since we went under contract before April 30th. That being said, homebuying has been somewhat stressful. Mr. Soup and I are learning so much about homebuying and about each other. some good...some bad....but overall it renewed my faith in us as a team. I feel like we work so well together and even though it's scary at times, I know I can lean on him for support.
okay, so back to the house....We really wanted to live near my school, but we actually found a home near where we live now, but in a different city. The city still has good schools (and even if I want, I can send the kiddos to my school district) and our home is near a dog park. Our house is around the corner from my gynocologist and a hospital...a sign? Our home was built in 1973, but the woman who owned it (a former teacher) kept it in really good condition. We have four decent sized bedrooms, two car garage, a fenced backyard, a fenced sideyard, two living areas and two dining areas. Our kitchen has been updated nicely and our master bedroom is very spacious! So, it is definitely a home in which we can stay for a while. We really lucked out on it. After seeing some duds and some nice ones out of our price range, I figured we were doomed. I love our new home. I'll post some pics once we are closer to closing. I do not want to jinx anything yet....