30.3.06

Overdue Update

I know, I owe you guys. I owe you about a million entries, but you’re going to get one, a long one. Unless of course, I mess something up so bad that I need to come back and add it.

WPA Conference

It was pretty awesome. I went to most of the Con Tinta events. I was actually at the one on Thursday night. The most exciting part of the night besides being greeted by Alicia Gaspar de Alba and chatting with Rolando Hinojosa was seeing Matthew McConaughey. He was eating dinner with some buddies on the patio. Fortunately, we ended up having dinner there and got a table in the patio adjacent to his. When he walked through the lobby (where were sitting) from the restroom to his table, we all just about fainted.

Anyway, this Con Tinta stuff is pretty cool. Rich was awesome for looking through the program and hooking us up with the Latino events so that we could go and support each other. It was cool to have to choose between a couple of events instead of having only one option. I would encourage any of you writers to attend. Just like the protests for immigration, we need the Latino voice to be heard in places like this. Anyway, I’m sure you all know how I feel about certain top selling authors.

Capturing Kid’s Hearts

I got sent to this training in Podunk, Texas. Okay, it was really Round Top, those of you who don’t know Texas, it’s just outside of Brenam, which is near College Station (home of Texas A&M), which is just outside of Austin. So really, it’s in the middle of nowhere.

Anyway, we got to stay at this Christian Retreat. It was a huge chunk of land with about four farm houses. We got to stay in the biggest one. It was a really nice house. My room had a door to the balcony and bunk beds. The d├ęcor was country-style. They had a little pond with fish and the porch on the first floor had about a million rocking chairs.

The training was pretty good. When I got back on Friday, I had students running up to my room to see if I had turned into one of the “nice” teachers.

TAKS

I’ve been busy because I had that training and I’ve been lagging three days. TAKS is only a two short weeks away and yesterday we got the “talking to.” I seriously don’t get what these legislators are thinking. I mean, how can I increase the percentage of kids passing TAKS when I don’t have the same kids as I did last year, but I digress. If I’m absent, this is why.

Immigration Protests

So there have been protests going on. Our school is freaking out that our kids are going to protest. They keep talking about it and the kids are like, “What protests Ms.?”

It comes down to an issue of safety. I’m not against the protest, heck, had I known, I would have been there. But these kids, the ones I teach, they have no idea. If they protested, I’d be upset because they would make us look like dumbasses. Anyway, I’m doing a lesson on the whole issue. I’m getting the ones that want to, to write letters and sending them off. I think we might have a debate in class on this issue.

8.3.06

Day 3

It’s day 3 of Spring Break. Funny how I’d be wishing it was Friday if it were any other week. At least when I get back, I work one full week and I'm off to "the camp that will change my life and make me nice." (The entire staff has been signed up to do a three day training in Round Rock, TX.) But after that, it's nose to the grindstone time. We don't have much longer until TAKS.
I'm heading out to Austin tomorrow. I'll be attending the WPA (Writers and Poets Association) conference. It should be fun. A lot of Latino faces will be there.
I suppose I should get back to cleaning. We're trying to get the place all spic and span before we head out to the park to fly kites. Monday we went to the zoo and it was one of the best days I've had in a long, long time. Anyway, foaming bubbles are waiting to be scrubbed onto the bathtub.

5.3.06

Mala

What channel will the Grannies or Oscars or whatever the heck is going to be on TV tonight be on? I’m guessing it will probably be ABC so I’m going to have to miss my Grey’s Anatomy. The bastards.

Well, Spring Break has turned out to be quite eventful. I woke up at 2:00 AM Saturday morning needing to drain the turtle and freezing half to death even though I was wrapped in two blankets. Two hours later, I woke up burning up, even though said blankets were on the opposite side of the bed. Yep, I got sick, majorly sick. I guess that’s what happens to for saying, “Nope, haven’t used that insurance yet. I haven’t gotten sick at all this year.”

It wasn’t until today that I could fathom the thought of ingesting anything food-like. Now, I’m dying to eat bread. Not any bread, a bolillo with a crispy crust. It seems like that’ll make my stomach finally feel okay. Earlier, I was craving chicken breast with rice and some kind of green vegetables, but I think I’ve waited too long. I’m heading out to Kroger in a few in search of the perfect meal for the sickling. The only good thing that has come out of it is that I’ve slept. I think I was awake for a total of two hours yesterday. The rest of the day was spent either clinging or fighting with the blankets dreaming about saving the youth of American with an IKEA duvet.

P.S. I blame all this sickness on the fact that I asked someone to get me a six pack of Lonestar and instead, they bring home a six pack of Keystone Light.

3.3.06

Spring Break and Acts of Cuteness (?)

This afternoon, the faculty vs. students game, kicked off our Spring Break. Boy was I excited to get out of dodge. I got home at about 4:30, I haven’t been home that early in forever. I hardly knew what to do with myself. I turned on the T.V. and passed out for about two hours. I still think I need to go pick up a six pack of Lonestar to celebrate.

Today, my cool friend M., asked me to cover her class for the last five minutes or so because she had to see the doctor before she skipped town. I arrived ten minutes before students were released and low and behold, the handsome young man was in there.

The handsome young man and I have developed a sort of interesting relationship. He manages to stop by my class about two or three times a day to say “hi.” He always walks in and says, “Heelllooo.” He sounds a lot like a Tele Tubby when he says this.

The other day, I was joking with him and told him that I was quitting after spring break. He quickly replied, “But you can’t! Not until the end of the year!”

“Who said that? I can quit at any time.”

“Let me see your paperwork!”

“I don’t have any paperwork.”

“Who’s going to be our teacher then?”
“Oh, I don’t know. I guess some sub.”

“But Ms! Can I give you a hug then?”

“Why?”

“Because you’re retiring!”

“Maybe after school.”

Well, ever since Thursday, he’s been coming back after school, to claim a hug.

So anyway, he was very happy to know I was going to watch the class. As soon as he heard me speak, he turned around in his chair and said, “Ms. Baeza! Come watch me play!” (This was a Tech. Applications class and playing on the computer is part of the curriculum.)

After they turned off the computers and were standing around waiting for the bell to ring, he invited me to sit next to him at the basketball game. I didn’t because I had to stand around and watch, make sure no one was up to any funny business. He did get his hug at the end of the day though.

During morning detention, another one of my students invited me to the skating rink. When I said I didn’t know how to skate, he quickly said, “I’ll teach you!”

And during our third period conference, I went to help my mentor and another fellow teacher practice shooting hoops for the game. The 6th grade girls came out of the locker room and one of them lunged herself at me and wrapped her arms around me squealing, “Ms. Baeza!”

It’s so funny that at the beginning of the year I was so afraid of them. I thought they were going to eat me up alive. Now, I have issues thinking about being away from them during vacations and my three day out of town training. My mentor said to me the other day, “Oh, you wait until the end of the year. You’re going to cry.”