Welcome to the mayhem

Hope you enjoy your visit!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Owl be Home for Christmas

We had a door decorating contest at school.  Our door won second place.  The kids got a 5 pound Hershey bar to share, they were so excited.  We had to use some recycled materials, so we used toilet paper tubes, grocery bags and left over paper from extra copies we made.  They colored the backs of the copy paper to make their owls and the eyes for the owls.  It was a fun way to spend the afternoon with them before Thanksgiving break.

Another criteria was the kids needed to do most of the door.  I put up the wrapping paper back ground and made the tree, they did the rest, including the lettering. I will have to say that I am proud of them.

Owl, be home for Christmas and so will my babies, for one more year. Mission papers go back in on January First.  phew,  it has been a long and sometimes painful year.  I'm glad we have got this far.  We have offered up many prayers and have many more to go.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Christmas Begins

How do you celebrate Christmas?  We have developed the habit of getting a real tree.  We really enjoyed getting them from Grandma's house.  But, the past two years we got our tree from TSC in town. My camera broke this summer and I have been taking a few grainy pictures with my ipad to make an occasional post, but Kyle bought me a early present and got me a Black Friday special on a cannon rebel.
 So, now I can get back to some quality pictures.  Someone snuck a picture of me too.
 I placed things, and then moved them, and maybe moved them once more.  It seemed to take a bit longer this year to get everything placed.
 These crazy pups keep eating the branches and we woke up to a chewed up bird ornament...it was one of Kayla's.  Ha!
 The stockings were hung by the chimney with care....

 So reindeer can come visit...we invited them to decorate the tree with us, but we just bought it that night and the branches were tied up and really didn't relax enough to decorate.
So instead we dipped chocolates...buckeyes of course and a few dipped nutter butters.  Christmas has settled on our hearts this year and it feels great!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Cleanin' for Company

Why do we only clean really well when company is coming over?  It feels good to have a really clean house.  I often find myself not caring if there is a few dishes in the sink or laundry needing to be put away.  Most evenings I find myself in a chair with papers to grade.  You know 2 or more hours worth of grading....I think I need to keep working on priorities.

As hectic as it is getting ready for company I find myself enjoying them being here.  Last night I was making dinner rolls to deliver to my visiting teaching list and my niece wanted to help.  So we were rolling dinner rolls together and she says, "Auntie Stacy, I just love coming to your house, two years is just too long."

Our big old house is full.  The energy that only little ones can bring is filling it to the brim with my heart as well.  For this I am thankful.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Red is Good

Kyle ordered me roses from a Lyons fundraiser several weeks ago.
They arrived Friday after a long week.  I was out for a couple of training meetings.  I have piles to catch up on, never a dull moment where paperwork is concerned.  It's kind of like laundry, when you finish between the all of us there is another load; there is always another assignment.

We went to my brothers to have Thanksgiving with my side of the family.  We always go the weekend before Thanksgiving because mom usually heads to Florida on Thanksgiving.  I made a new pie, German Chocolate, it was delicious, but very decadent, not sure that it is a keeper recipe.

I made Heath bar cake once and now, I have to make it every time we have a family function.  So much for pumpkin.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

It is all a matter of perspective

Sometimes in life I find myself distracted.  Lost in work, drowning in the regulations set by people who have know idea what it is like to be in a room with 28 twelve year olds.  Treading water to make a curriculum accessible to every type of learner.  Listening to the loudest critics tell you that after six years of education you don't know how to teach their children, why did my son or daughter get in trouble....what you don't teach cursive?  
It has consumed me...chewed me up, crushed my light, and spit me out.
After donating 12-14 hours daily to my profession, I'm changing my perspective.
I am a mother.  I am a wife.  I am a daughter of God.  I am most happy when this is my perspective FIRST!  I am a teacher, and I work hard, and will not stop, but I am not longer going to let it crush my light, I will do my best to ignore my loudest critics, but this is not what defines who I am.  

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Missing Out on the Land of Lakes

Kyle and Kayla flew to Minnesota today to visit with family and enjoy a 25 th wedding anniversary of his sister Kelly.  This will be the first time in 12 years that all eight of the Crawford kids will be all together at the same time.
I'm sad to not go, but there is no vacation time in October for me.  Besides I'm off to outdoor school in a few days.

Don't know if you can make out kyle and Kayla in there, but they are there waiting to check in.  In the mean time Kota and I enjoyed some 5 Guys burgers and fries and we did a little boy clothes shopping.  The kid needed a pair of jeans without dirt stains.  He found a new flannel shirt too, so I wasn't going to deny him that.
Life is changing for us, we seem to be all functioning in different realms.  Often I find myself missing the little kids I once had.  Problems are simpler then, usually a kiss could take away the troubles and the worry.  Now it is a lot of patience and prayer that seem to get us through.  It seems we find our knees a lot more in this stage of life.  Where we are once again at the brink of lots of decisions about the future.  Ours as a couple and the life of our children.  Our prayer is that Heavenly Father will help them make their decisions and help them find the path that is right for them...oh to watch them grow is awesome!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Hayride and Bonfire

Saturday night we hosted a YSA event at my dad's farm.  We set up a bonfire and hayride and they came and played.
Can you believe some of these kids never had a hotdog roasted on a stick before?  is that even possible?  I guess they can add a new line item fulfilled on their bucket list.

Dad stacked a huge brush pile for us, and boy was it nice.

You can't have a bonfire with out s'mores and donuts, don't forget the cider.

 Thanks Kota and Kayla for helping grandpa set up the hayride.  Dumby me left the camera back at the bonfire during the ride.

I think they all had fun.  I look forward to planning more.

Friday, October 10, 2014

I've Been a Bit SLO

SLO is a new term in the realm of teaching. It feels a bit like writing something for a team of lawyers.    I have to create a test for my 6 th graders with my team members to address the learning needs of my class so the State of Ohio can track the progress of students in subjects that are not tested by the state.  We have to create our own test, decide how we are going to score our test, then administer and grade the test, and compare how much the students learn by April this year.  Sounds okay, but it is a tremendous amount of work on top starting a school year.  All the paperwork needs to be done among, grading papers for normal work, initial assessments for readability, interim reports and parent teacher conferences.
No fun, that is for sure.
This little niece turned 5 in September.  I have to say I wish we had these contraptions when I learned how to roller skate.

I got to go with my Mother-in-law, Kayla and her friend to see Gladys Knight and the Saints United voices.  It was an amazing spirit-filled night.  Five Guys burgers on the way home were awesome too.
Kayla is working at Target now, it is fun to see her growing up.  She makes some fun choices and is turning out ok.  Kota works hard everyday physically and comes home filthy, the dirtier he is the more proud he is of himself.  He is progressing well.
Kyle just passed a kidney stone this week, he kept it, and named it Harold...he's weird.  But, I love him!
So much has happened in the last 6 weeks but, that is it in a nutshell.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

A Day in My Life

So what is it like in my classroom?  Right now it is bright, shiny and new.
New supplies in the red cad days to cover those who aren't prepared for class saves a lot of my time and frustration.

Students can check out books from my personal library of books.  I get some from my own children through the years, garage sale finds and my own personal money.

The State of Ohio requires that we post our lesson objects daily/weekly which ever is being worked on.

I have a few classroom computers that we utilize daily trying to build 21st century learning skills.

Do you notice my wise old owl theme.  I just love my earthy, natural feel.

I even get gifts from my students, beautiful art work to decorate the room.  Today I had a student bring me a candle he made while camping over the weekend.  I love the homemade things, just like when my own kids brought me home their artwork and trinkets they made.
The best part of teaching is the relationship building.  I love learning about my students and their little quirks.  I usually take on the more challenging cases and work hard to establish a safe and comfortable place for them to be.  This is a small ministry that I enjoy providing.  I sure do enjoy the moments that we can just be real with each other.  When all of this is established then learning can take place, the data can move in the right direction and memories are made.
Most days I love my job, the student part, on the days where politics or drama is the loudest I forget about loving it, but in the quiet moments before they come I'm always anticipating a good day.
So that my friends is a day in my life.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Ready, Set, Go!

Hair cut .... Check!
Copies made...check!
New shoes....check!
Lesson plans written.....check!
Room cleaned and organized...check!

This week I head back to school.  I get a fresh start, new students minds to fill with knowledge about ancient civilizations, reading novels, how to write, spelling and read.  To develop their young personalities and opportunities at peer interactions.  We will solve problems together and have a fun, safe learning atmosphere.  It is not the job I thought I would be doing this year.  I really thought I would land an administration position this summer.

I applied for and did not receive over 20 positions.  As the rejection letters came in all summer and the self esteem dropped I had hope in knowing I received all the training I could.  I did my part and Heavenly Father would do the rest.  I learned our wills were not in alignment this summer.

I learned that although prayer works and doing our part works, that sometimes what we really want is not what the Father wants.  I have an excellent resume, and was told so by many, what I did not understand was why?  Until I received a new calling at church toward the middle of July.  If I were to have what I wanted, a principal position, I would not have the time that I needed to do my new calling as a ward missionary.  I now understand the will of Heavenly Father and am happy to do his work first.

New calling...check.
Ready for a new school year as a teacher....check.
Get set to start Monday....check.
Here we Go!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014


So many things change, seasons, time, weather...why not plans too?  This little lady had plans of going to dog training school in September.  She saved her housing cost all summer long from her graduation earnings.
We went to get a school loan for the tuition and she couldn't get a school loan because the school is not a traditional college.  The bank offered her a personal loan, but she doesn't hold a full time job or have credit, plus the interest rate is double that of a school loan.
She decided to go next September and get a full time job to save the money and skip the loan all together.  She has had three interviews in the past week and one more Thursday.  She would love to work in a vet office and interviewed at one in Wooster.  She has a second interview at Target.  Keep her in your prayers that it will all work out.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

More of South Carolina

This was the beautiful pool at our apartment for the week.

Did you get a hot dog on national hot dog day?  We did at cosmic dogs in Charleston.  They are awesome.

We did a little walking around charleston.  The city is gorgeous.  We didn't bump into any ghosts in the cemetery.

Cobble stone roads.  Can you hear the horse drawn carriages.  That would be something I would love to see.

All carriages and gas lamp posts.

The best part was spending time with our friends.  Who I didn't get any real pics of because my camera broke on vacation and I was using my iPad for pics.  Needless to say it is not real convienent to care it around to the beach.

Our last night we went back to Melvin's BBQ to get some awesome ribs, chicken and pulled pork.

Mad the best corn bread I've ever tasted.

Wish there was one in Mansfield.

We spent a few more minutes on Sullivan's island before we needed to get some shut eye for the trip back.  East river tunnel was closed in Virginia on the way.  So we bumped into this beautiful view on the detour.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

South Carolina Sunshine and Fishes

Our family vacation this year we are in Charleston, SC.  We started the week doing a harbor tour.  We got to see shrimp boats.

Fort Sumter....

USS Yorktown

The big bridge..

And the aquarium.  It was a great day.