Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Another Blog Hop!

Well hello blog hoppers! My name is Amber and I am a senior at the University of Alabama! I will graduate in May with a Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education! I love to cook, it's my favorite hobby! That's why most people read my blog in the first place! So, look around, check it out, and follow me for a crazy, crazy ride to graduation and scarily enough, becoming a teacher!

This is me!

This is me and my baby brother, he's 16 and already 6'2!

This is my sweet little dog Trixie! She is the most loving dog ever! People always comment that little dogs are usually grouchy, but not this one! She's my sweetheart!

I love Alabama Football!!
This picture is well......enough said!

I LOVE going to the beach!
I could live there!

Well, that's really a short about me! But look around and thanks for stopping by!

Welcome to my blog! Just hop around and thanks for stopping by!
MckLinky Blog Hop

My Life!

I always get asked, "Why don't you ever call me anymore?" Or, "Where have you been? I haven't seen you in months!" Well guys, this is where I am! I am always doing something for school or work or a classroom. It's really overwhelming at times so no, I don't just pick up the phone to chit chat with people that I used to talk to on a daily basis. I mean, I hardly have enough time for my boyfriend and dog!

To some, my life may seem boring, stressful, or hectic...but to me... I love it! I wouldn't have it any other way. I have a cousin, Megan, and she is a nurse. I mean, bless anyone's soul who will go through nursing school and be a nurse. I used to want to be a nurse. Then I realized that it was a disgusting job and I hate the hours that you have to work and it's just draining. I saw where she was clearly getting tired of working her job and other nurses were also saying how miserable they were and that got me thinking that my life isn't as bad as I think it is. I mean, yes I have bookoos of stuff due every day and plenty of non-sense work to do but really, I'm doing this because I love the career I have chosen to do for the rest of my life! I cannot imagine dreading waking up to get ready to go to work. Why yes, every job has its bad day, but my job has plenty more good days than bad.

For example, there are some kids that I have taught that have been just straight up brats! These kids have more than I do and probably ever will. They do not respect you as a teacher and do not care what kind of activity you have planned for them because they have probably already done something like it at home and had more fun. But, then there are the kids that show up to school so happy to be there because this is their only meal of the day or because this is the only place they have air conditioning or heat. These are the kids that come to school because I, as a teacher, am all they have! These kids love me with all of their hearts and I love them too! They appreciate it when you get up there and teach to them. They really appreciate it when you bring them a fun activity to do with your lesson. These kids are why I will never hate my job and never dread going to work. These kids need me.

So, no longer will I gripe and complain about my life because honestly, I think I have made the best career choice for myself! No, teachers don't get paid well and no, teachers are not respected but I'm not doing it for money and I am most definitely not doing it to please other adults. I am doing it for my students. For the students I have this semester, the students I will have next semester, the students I had a year ago, and the students I will have ten years from now.

Well, this turned into a strange post. I never really get my feelings out like that but I'm glad I did. My basic message is this, if you hate your job and career you have chosen, don't just stick with it because that's the easy way, do what YOU want to do! My family about laid out a brick house when I told them I was not going to be a nurse and that I was coming to the University of Alabama to be a teacher. You have to do what's best for you and if you do that, you will always be happy!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

I'm still alive!

Well, I have been gone FOREVER! Actually, I haven't really went anywhere....I've just been victimized of Fall semester of my senior year! It has been INTENSE! Let me start where I left off!

I am placed at Northport Elementary School in 1st grade this semester! I love 1st grade! It is the grade I wanted for my internship, but I'm actually pretty glad I got it this semester because going from 5th grade to 1st grade has been a crazy experience! I love the students though, they are amazing! I have a German student in my class who speaks nothing but German. That has been an experience in itself. Can you imagine being in 1st grade in Germany or rather yet sending your 1st grade child to school in Germany by himself?! I know I can't! I go to that school every Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday from 7:45-3:15. I do a lot of teaching this semester but I'm very glad because that means hopefully I will be prepared for my internship next semester! Also, can I just tell you that there are only 33 days left of school for me this semester! I feel like I could die! That makes me so happy! I am so ready to be done and graduate and get married and have my own classroom!

I have also been working on my Social Studies unit that I will teach at the end of the semester. I am teaching Thanksgiving! At first I thought these kids wouldn't like it because they already know everything but I was so wrong! I asked one of the little boys why the Pilgrims came to America and he told me "To chase them rainbows and catch the gold at the end of them." I laughed when he said this then he said, "Why are you laughin'? They needed money!" lol It was the cutest thing ever! My students have no knowledge of Thanksgiving so I have my hands full when it comes to teaching that!

With Fall semester comes football and Fall weather! Speaking of football....can I just PLEASE get a Roll Tide!! This Saturday was our Homecoming against South Carolina! Is that not crazy? Why on Earth would we play an SEC team for Homecoming?! OH well, it was a GREAT win! It was so cold but so worth it! Also, this Saturday is our biggest rivalry game.....Tennessee! Ugh, I feel almost dirty just typing that word! We will most definitely tear them apart! I can't wait!

Fall weather is my favorite in the world! I just love it! I love my highs in the 60's and lows in the 40's. It's just perfect to me! With that weather comes food! I love warm, comforting food in the Fall and Winter! So, I have been cooking. I have a killer good chicken casserole and homemade macaroni and cheese recipe at the end of this post! Check it out!

But, I need to go. I have a million lesson plans to write and I need to finish these parts of my unit that are do and type up a reflection! Ahh!

Homemade Macaroni and Cheese

This makes a really big pan but I like to have it for leftovers for lunch throughout the week!

Here's what you need:
2 cups of elbow macaroni
2 Tbsp of butter
1/8 cup of all purpose flour
1 1/4 cup milk (you'll need a little extra too)
1 tsp of dried mustard (I promise, you need it.)
1 beaten egg
80z of shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 tsp of salt
1 tsp of pepper

Preheat the oven to 350

First, boil your macaroni. You want to make sure that you undercook it just a bit.
I suggest only boiling it for about 7 minutes because it will cook more in the oven.

Next, beat your egg in a separate bowl and set it aside.

In a LARGE pot, melt the butter and the flour together on medium-low heat. Whisk these two together for about 3-5 minutes or until well blended. You have to continually whisk it or it will burn.

Next, add milk and dried mustard and whisk until smooth.
Cook this for about 3-5 minutes.
It will start to get really thick like gravy.
It gets really thick really fast so you want to make sure that you watch it.
If it gets too thick like mine always does, just add a little more milk.
It needs to be creamy/thick not chunky/thick or runny/thick.

This is how it should look!
Once it looks like this, take a 1/4 cup measure and
pour some of this into the bowl with the beaten egg.
This is called tempuring. If you put the egg straight into the pot
you will have scrambled eggs! So, tempur the egg with this mixture by whisking it in the bowl, then add it to the pot and whisk it together.

Once it is smooth, you can then add the best part.....CHEESE!
Save a little bit of the cheese because that is what you will top it off with.

Now, whisk this all together until it is really smooth.
At this point is where you add the salt and pepper.
Please, don't be stingy.

Once you have tried the cheese sauce and it is to your liking, then you can add the drained macaroni noodles.
Mix it together well.
I just add a little bit of noodles at a time. Sometimes you can add too much and not every piece will be cheesy goodness. So, just add it a little at a time so you can make sure each piece has PLENTY of cheese on it!

Once it has been mixed together, pour it into a buttered or sprayed dish.
This night I only made a small pan because it was just for me, but other times I cook it in
my glass 13x9 dish. You can also cook this in a casserole dish.

Then add some more cheese to the top.

Then pop it in the oven for about 20-25 minutes.
You want it to be bubbly and starting to brown!


My favorite home-cooked meal in the whole world.......

It's so super easy and cheap! I mean it literally takes like 5 steps!

Now, some of you don't eat anything with the word casserole in it, so just call it Poppyseed Chicken and add some poppyseeds and no one will ever know!

Here's what you need:
1 sleeve of Ritz crackers (you can use store brand like I did)
2 chicken breasts
1 8 oz container of sour cream
2 cans of cream of chicken soup

First things first, season your chicken breasts with some salt and pepper and boil them for about 20-25 minutes.
Once they are done, shred them up into a LARGE bowl.

Then add your sour cream and soups to the chicken and stir.

Next, pour that mixture into the bottom of a buttered or sprayed dish. Here's where my macaroni dish went off too....hmmm...I wonder if I had them together that night?!

Next, crush up an entire sleeve of crackers. I just crush them up in the sleeve then open it and pour them on top.

Next, dot the top with butter.

Then, bake on 350 for 20-25 minutes or until bubbly.

Then serve it up with some homemade macaroni and cheese and there you go!
A delicious, warm, comfort food that should now be a favorite of yours!

Go try it!!