Saturday, January 24, 2015

I Got Fired

I got fired.  There, I said it.

Well, they called it terminated.  But it means I’m fired...ain’t got no job...working on the unemployment line.

I didn’t do anything wrong, they just did away with my position.

We saw it coming.  We just didn’t see it coming this soon.  We were sure our school would be closed at the end of the year, but we were assured over and over that we would be moved to another position in the school system.

We were blind sided.  None of us saw it coming or if we did, we didn’t say it out loud nor did we even think it!  We knew changes were coming…

But I’m O.K. with it.  Really!  

I may not with the power bill comes due in March.  For now I feel this great and wonderful peace…!  I have really slept better this last week than I have in months.  Let me explain…

For almost a year now, I have wrestled with quitting my job.  I love teaching...if I was really able to teach, but that’s not what was happening.  I was teaching a test.  I was teaching students how to pass a test and over-looking the focus of “learning to be learners”.  There was so much to cover “before the test”, that we couldn’t stop to focus on fun learning activities or work on what students weren’t getting or figuring out another way for a few students to learn a concept because we “had to get it in before the test”!  

Teaching was fun to me.  Being able to see a concept “click” with a kid is so awesome!  It’s like getting to see a shooting star for the first time!  It was especially special with the at-risk kids I worked with.  These were the ones that just needed a little extra help or just someone to tell them that they really could do it and show them that they could.  Most of them craved attention and our small classes allowed that individual attention and focus.

When we had to go to an individual computer learning due to reduction in staff numbers, teaching was a challenge.  I was teaching not only the subject I loved but others that I was uncomfortable and felt inadequate teaching students.  I was frustrated and each month I was more and more frustrated with not just teaching but all the other unnecessary trappings of working with at-risk youth and administration constraints.  Teaching was losing it passion.

The students were learning what they needed to know.  They were learning at their individual paces.  They were getting help when they needed it.  They were learning to pass a test.  But was losing my passion.

I had found a new passion...farming...pasture farming!  We started raising pastured poultry for meat and eggs along with pastured pork.  It was rewarding for me.  Working in the sun, watching the animals grow and then produce savory meat for our family and customers made me look forward to work every day during summer breaks.  The work was hard but oh, so rewarding!  I felt apart of the land that my grandfather had so loved.  I was working the same land he had nurtured.  Together with the Hubby and my boys, we were making our land profitable again.

I began praying and wondering should I quit....should I continue like we had been...should we leave it in God’s hands.  Then I prayed some more.  What did God want me to do?  What did He need me to do?  Was this farming thing something He wanted our family to do or was it me being selfish?

This week, I got an answer…

And I have found His peace.  I know that God is in control.  I realize He was in control all the time.  He was waiting on me to surrender to Him.  

Now, if I can remember this when all the bills start coming in...but I will be happy and content!  My family will be stronger and more passionate.

I’m ready for this next step in my life and the life of my family.  I pray that God will be with us and bless our farm and help us grow.  As He got us here, He will bring us through it….

I got fired...and I’m glad God closed that door!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Wordless Wednesday...Snow Day Pictures

Just wanted to share some pictures from the big snow storm we had a few weeks ago.

Ready for spring yet??

Friday, February 21, 2014

Hamp Turns 5

February is when Hamp turns 5.  But if you ask him, he'll quickly tell you that he's not 5...he's still 4!

We celebrated his birthday with just the family.

The next day, he celebrated with his class at school.  The only thing was he didn't want to have his picture made blowing out the candle on his cupcake...

It's hard to believe that my "little tumor" has now been in our lives for 5 years!  Before he came into our lives, I never thought I would have another child...but now I can't remember life without him!  He is a joy to all that know him and true blessing in the lives of his Mama, Daddy, and Big Brother!  Thank you Lord for giving him to us...

Monday, February 17, 2014

Snow Day Breakfast

Since it was snowing this morning and nobody had school, it was time for pancakes!

HoMeMaDe Pancakes...with fresh Vermont maple syrup!

Grandmama gave us the maple syrup for Christmas and this was the first time that we opened it.  The pancakes are made with our homemade baking mix and fresh laid eggs (of course!).

It was a great start to a fun day of snow watching...

Friday, February 14, 2014

Dancing With the Congregation

The Barefoot Youth Ministry at the Toccoa First United Methodist Church held a fundraiser February 8th for their mission work this spring and summer.  It was a dance competition that was a night of good food and true entertainment!

Knox was one of the youth working the event.  He shocked me when he came out of his room and asked, "How do I look?"  He was in Mr. Fred's suit that we bought from the estate sale after Mr. Fred and Ms. Wilma had passed away.  Knox could wear Mr. Fred's dress pants and suit almost perfectly, so we couldn't turn down the opportunity to get them.

When we came for the dinner, Knox was finishing up a few last minute decorations. So, with him fussing the whole time...I got a picture of my first born, all dressed up!

The youth had decorated the Cheek Hall beautifully!  There were stars hanging from the ceiling and candles on the tables. The stage was also festive with an arch decorated with the red and white theme.

After a fabulous three course meal, the entertainment started!  The first couple was Elaine and J.B.  They set the tone for how we all should never stop dancing...

Next came Pinky and  .  They showed us what it meant to really be S-M-O-O-T-H...

The two step took on new meaning with Tony and his daughter Mary Beth on the dance floor!

Mark and Susan slid onto the dance floor...showing us how to work the floor in step together.

Then came Ethan and Katie.  Their energy was high flying on the dance floor!

And last, but by no means least, was Harry and Patti.  They popped onto the dance floor with a little bit of magic...

All the couples not only showed off their best steps, but did it in a truly entertaining way that keep the audience tapping their feet and clapping their hands!  None of us wanted the evening to end, but we had to crown a winner...

Mark and Susan!

They may have won, but the real winners will be the people who will benefit from the mission work that the Barefoot Youth will be doing in Normal, Oklahoma and Toccoa, Georgia this spring and summer!

Happy Valentine's Day!

Don't forget to dance...

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Wordless Wednesday...The All Day Snow

It snowed all day Tuesday.
That hardly never happens here!

We had to run an errand.
So we went through downtown Toccoa and took in the beautiful snow falling!

The train depot looked like a warm gingerbread house in the snow.

Toccoa is one of only three stops that Amtrak's Crescent line makes in Georgia. 

Hubby and Hamp wanted to see a train come down the track in the snow.

The new county courthouse looked quite and graceful as the snow fell all around.

While the old Stephens County courthouse looked majestic and proud just posing for the camera...

Thursday, January 9, 2014

My Favorite Dinner Date

As Hamp and I sat down to eat this evening, he looked up and smiled really big saying, "CHEESE."

We were quietly eating.  He had been looking through a Thomas the Train magazine while I was looking through a new seed catalog and listening to the evening news.  Neither or us were talking.  This is somewhat usually for Hamp.  He is normally talking a mile-a-minute from the time he comes home to the time he goes to sleep. 

I was taking in the quiet when I looked up to see Hamp with a mouth full smiling wildly at me!  As I giggled at him, he came over and said, "Can you take my picture Mama?"

I grasped the camera under a consistent singing of "CHEESE".  I readied the camera and captured this little cutie in a typical moment for him.

God has given him an uncanny ability to brighten up any moment.  He finds a way to add joy and sunshine even when you don't realize that you need it.  He is truly my light of God...

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