Tuesday, December 27

New Years Resolution

I am starting to think of what resolutions I'd like to make for the new year.  I (H) shared one with my mom (M) today:

H: For my new year's resolution, I am going to pay whoever hears me swear $1.
M: Why are you deciding to not swear anymore?
H: Because it's bad
M: But it's funny
H: (confused)
M: When you swear, it's because you are startled.  You don't swear out of anger.  So it's not bad.
H: (Thinking of the times I swear.  She has a point.  Who's parents encourage swearing?  Mine.  Swearing abstinence? It's not going to happen.) You are the coolest mom.

Here's to New Years Resolutions.

Wednesday, December 21

I was just watching an SNL clip

and laughing out loud
After a minute of this hilarity I hear my parents walking down the hall.  First my mom comes in, then my dad.  My face was covered by my laptop screen.  They both stand by my bedside and look concerned, then relieved when my face came into view. 
I thought they were coming in for family prayer or something.  No.  They were checking on me.  My dad heard what he thought was crying, called my mom up, and both came to see what was the matter. 
I wish I was a little bit quicker.  Like splashed some water on my face and see what they would do if I really was crying.  Too cute.  I love them.

Monday, December 12

My Father's Foul Mouth

One of the many perks of living with my parents is hearing my dad swear.  He would never swear in front of me and it is always a treat when I catch him.  He thinks I'm downstairs or that no one is home.  Here are a couple instances within just this month: (insert appropriate swear word in place of 'BEEP')

D: Son of a BEEP!
D: My cell phone fell in the toilet!

D: [watching TV] Holy BEEP!
H: [In my room down the hall] DAD!
D: What?!
H: You just said "Holy S"
D: I said "Holy Shiite Muslim!" They're showing all the actors and actresses that have died in the last year.  And I recognize a lot of em!....Oh David Nelson died!  Ricky Nelson's brother!  I didn't know that!  He was a good man.

Friday, December 9

The Penny War!

Today was the last day of a week of the Penny War.

I have a strategy that would blow your mind.  I am not going to tell you for fear it will leak to my co-workers.  But it was approved by the principal so not cheating. 
Here are some things I will share with you, just to give you a glimpse:
  • I stand out in the hall by my jar and hand out m&m's to kids.  Sometimes it will be one m&m to every kid that passes.  Sometimes to kids that put pennies in my jar.  Even though they should put pennies in their OWN jars :)
  • I remind the kids to "bomb" (put silver coins) in the #1 teacher's jar (which was never me, I lay low till the last day)
  • AND I have pep talks with my own kids at least once a day, giving them updates to my strategy for that day or just telling them how exciting it all is.  We've become closer from this penny war. 
Last year I won the trophy for making the most MONEY, which means I got bombed more than I had pennies and dollars.  But this year I wanted to win the trophy for most POINTS (and I did.) So I made sure I didn't make any enemies with the other kids at school.  I wanted everyone to be on my side.  Thus, I handed out m&m's to all and got them to bomb the right classes.
My class raised almost $300...that is almost $10 a kid!  They caught my competitive, over-zealous obsession.  With constant reminders to them (and mostly myself) that this money is for families in need, we kept bringing in the dough.  It was a fun week to be a teacher and take part in this thrilling game.  Even if we hadn't won a trophy or the pizza party that comes with it, we have amazing memories and the fun of knowing we were bringing Christmas to families in need.

Wednesday, December 7

Nailed Christmas

Do you like my fingernails?

Tuesday, December 6

Heart Attack!


My carpool friend noticed I was having a rough morning on the way to work.
By lunch I was seriously considering calling in a sub and leaving, I just wasn't my normal happy self and it was weighing on me.
Well I walk in the classroom door from lunch to find all my students working on Daily Oral Language.  I was so surprised and gave them two class letters.  I didn't notice until they pointed them out, but there were pink hearts all over the classroom!  On the table and counter tops, on the cupboards and walls, "you're the best in the world!" on the globe.  They were notes from my carpool's class and my own.  I was so touched that I started crying.  And it got pretty awkward because 5th graders don't cry when they are happy.  So I told them to bring it in for a class hug.  We had a good laugh as we gathered, layer upon layer, in a circle to embrace.

I LOVE MY JOB and my KIDS and my dearest carpool friend.

Sick joke gone good

 I was approached by one of my dear students with this Christmas gift today.
In case you can't read the quote, it says "I'm going there someday..."
My first reaction was "Ummm...are they trying to hint that I should get married?"
It was borderline offensive.  Not really, but I seriously thought they chose a special quote for me because I am not married yet... haha.
But then I looked at the actual temple.  I had never seen this temple before.  So I asked the student what temple it was.
"The Payson Temple!"
My reaction caused the rest of the class to gather round and take a look.
Isn't is beautiful? 
I AM going there someday!  I love and treasure this gift and can't wait for it to be built.


I don't know if you have heard of poutine, but it it french fries, gravy, and cheese.  You eat it with a fork like a meal.  And the way it feels in your tummy is like a cozy Christmas morning.

I had this yesterday for the first time.  My friend Coryse has family in Canada so they make it all the time.  With scratch from whole potatoes. 

I will never be the same!

Friday, December 2

some things
don't matter as much
when the things that matter

Sunday, November 27

My top 3

Favorite engagement pictures
I was cut out of these, I am a little offended

But I want to be a part of this relationship.  They are that great.  I couldn't be happier for my sweet sister!

Monday, November 21

Bucket List

Go skydiving
Get Married
Have Children
Visit Europe, Asia, South America and Africa
punch someone in the face
dissect more animals
eat shark
Have debt no more than one year at a time
have a garden every year
Hike a volcano
Helicopter ride
Death Valley
Niagra Falls
Maine crab legs and lighthouse
Eat at a five star restaurant yearly
Make a five star-worthy meal and dress all fancy and eat it
Weigh no more than I do now unless I have a child inside of me
Participate in a triathlon
Be on a talk show
Create art at least once a year
Learn to play guitar really really well
Take voice lessons
Meet the prophet
Be the general relief society president
Get a masters and PhD
Watch the sun rise and set in one day on a south or north facing beach
Go back to New Zealand
Say yes
Do as much genealogy as possible
Serve a senior mission
Fall in love over and over again with my spouse
Give high fives to strangers...often
Write a book or publish an article
Hot-air balloon across the country
See the northern lights
fly first class
SLC underground tunnels
BYU underground tunnels
7 world wonders 
Ice climbing
kiss a stranger
go to New Zealand
go to Australia
bungy jump
shotover jet
horseback ride through lord of the rings forest
cruise to mexico
cruise through fjords
New York
Eat at all the best places in New York
Harry Potter World
Watch 6 movies in one day

Friday, November 18

I'm getting sick

I told my parents individually that I wasn't feeling well and here are their responses:
Mom: You are burning the candle at both ends
I had her explain what that even means.
Dad: You're a hypochondriac

I have a very large feather down coat.  It goes down to my mid-calf region. 
I came downstairs this morning and my dad, noticing this oversized covering, began to tell me how warm it'll be today.  Something about the cloud cover and blah blah blah.  He would have to set me on fire to convince me to remove it.  I have had it on all day.  And I'm inside.  It's like wearing a quilt.

Thursday, November 17

Mr. Mysterious

As I read with my reading groups at the back table, I don't want to be interrupted by the rest of the students.  So I have them write their name in one of these columns if they have a comment (C) question (?) or an emergency (911.)  I get to them when I have a break between meeting with groups.

Mr. Mysterious had a question today.
This has happened a few times and I still don't know who Mr. Mysterious is.
I can't wait to hear what his question is.

Tuesday, November 15

Wax Museum

Today is the day 5th graders dress up as a famous American.  They stand out in the hall all afternoon and for an hour in the evening.  When their home-made button is pushed, they come to life and tell you, in first person, about their famous American. 

I loved listening to each individual student and their memorized speech.  They always take it way too far (and usually it's the parents that are more intense about it...but that makes it a bigger deal which makes it way cooler.)

One kid brought in a Taboo buzzer.  He put it in his desk, went to the restroom, came back, and it wasn't in his desk anymore.  I asked around, no one fessed.  I had a kid come up to me, privately, saying he thought he heard a buzzing.  "It could have been a bee though, or someone's phone vibrating or something..."  Very helpful, thank you.
So after tears, mom coming down to the school, and a visit from the principal giving my class a talk about stealing, we found it.  In his desk. 

As an aside, I'd like to say I am sensitive.  But I strive to be as reasonable as possible, especially when my kids cry.  I try to make whatever they are crying about not a big deal so they stop crying. 

So that kicked off today's theme: It was all about the buttons.  It took an hour to make the coolest button, complete with springing paper affixed between two shapes and a message that says "push me."  You had the constant "buzz" from the taboo buzzer, the 1st and 2nd graders running up and down the rows of fifth graders, pushing their buttons, and of course the tattle tellers: "Colton says 'you suck' whenever someone pushes his button!"

Wednesday, November 9

We're doing things a little differently in our ward.

I was released from Music a week ago.  Here is my favorite memory.

I was the chorister for sacrament meeting, and the opening hymn was "How Firm a Foundation"
After singing it, we had ward business, etc.
Then the bishopric member that was conducing stands up to tell us the next hymn for the sacrament.
"We're going to do the sacrament a little differently today.  We will prepare for the sacrament by singing hymn number 85, "How Firm a Foundation."

Maybe you had to be there. But it was pretty awkward.  So I stood up and pointed to the display and we sang a sacrament hymn.

My nephew is adorable

"How come grampa jabs food in his mouth and chews it so fast making this sound (Makes loud chomping sound)"

I laugh

"How COME?!"

(pictured left)

Thursday, November 3


One thing I don't do enough is observe.
Mostly in nature.
Today I was just driving slowly down a residential road.  Obviously en route home.  I like to take the back way because there is less to deal with.  Less traffic.  Less traffic lights.  Less people.
I like to look up at the tall trees lining the roads and specifically notice the gradual change on a single tree...from green to vibrant oranges, light yellows, or bold reds.
And that is what I feel is lacking when I go to a large city.  There is nature there, but not enough to really notice.  There are some exceptions, but you know what I mean.
Being indoors and with winter coming up...I'm really trying to soak all the beauty in.  Snow is beautiful, but it overstays its welcome...
I find it interesting that we feel closest to God when we are surrounded by His creations.   How often I overlook them and take for granted those opportunities to feel peace.

Thursday, October 27

I am a believer of Abnormal J's

During silent reading time, a student (male) walks up to me with a thoughtful look on his face.

"Miss Shumway I just noticed something.  All the J's in the room are not normal.  They are all cursive or written in a weird way or something like that.  I just was looking around at all the J's and that is what I noticed."

The thought going through my mind was: "I can relate.  I would do the same thing with the letter H... But why J?  Your name doesn't even start with J, why do you care about J?"

Oh, I know.  You sit next to Josie.  Remember your elementary school crushes?

Wednesday, October 26

High Heels according to a fifth grade boy

"High heels look really fun.  They have this thing that comes down from the bottom of the shoe with this pad on the bottom and they could be used for like...stilts."

Friday, October 21

Kina Grannis


I don't usually share my soul through poetry, so consider this a treat...or a trick

naps are good
naps are great
specially during
my fall break

Ok now I'm wondering why humans don't hibernate?  

Friday, October 14

Swiss Dias

I saw this painted tin art at Swiss Days in Midway over Labor Day weekend.  I haven't stopped thinking about it since.  I got some great frames, earrings, stickers for nails (tat-toes.) All these things didn't cost very much and so I felt justified in indulging myself.  But not the painted tin. 

Go to this website and check out their stuff.  Let me know if you are breaking the commandment of coveting like me.  So I can have your company with my misery.  Or give me thousands of dollars.

(Um...seriously click on those links up at the top, I LOVE MY EARRINGS and FRAMES and those stickers stayed on for FIVE WEEKS on my toe nails.)


I refuse to join.  It seems like a bad idea.  Maybe when school is out next summer.

I admit I went on the site just barely to get this link.

Tuesday, October 4

Another couple reasons why my job is the best

When I walk by a line of second graders and hear one of them whisper excitedly: "She's the BEST!"

And then coming in from lunch and finding this note on my desk (typed just as she wrote it):

Dear Mis. Shumway
You are a great teacher the best the kids that get you next year will be really lucky.
You understand every thing, likes, dislikes, reading, Math, and thinking.
You can help any Student in the hole world.
You rock have a good school year.
Love your very happy Student
P.S. I loved eating lunch with you
(I let my kids eat lunch with me when their table wins most points)

Isn't that adorable? I literally felt like warm soft cotton fill my heart.

Sunday, October 2

My nephew, after meeting a date

8 years old, wise beyond his years.
He met a guy I went on a couple dates with, and I asked him what he thought and if he had any advice. Just to see what he would say. Here's some snippets of a beautiful conversation:
  • "He probably really likes you because he asked you out."
  • "You should maybe ask him on a date next so he knows you like him."
  • "You guys will probably get married next summer."
  • "If you want it to work out, don't fight while you are dating. If you fight while you are dating, it probably won't last."
  • "If you want to stay married, don't fight for at least the first year. After the first year it's ok."

Friday, September 30

The FLUSHER!!!!!!

Once the principal announced my name, dozens of kids ran to line up. They wanted to throw the ball that hit the target that got me soaking. I wore a swim cap and goggles...so glad that I did.

The best part of it all was that I loved it. I liked acting scared, egging the kids on, teasing them, and letting them push it if they missed. (only if they had been or were my students though :)

OK that's not me in this picture, it's my principal that borrowed my swim cap. Same dif.

This morning

I added two halloween oreos to my protein shake.

Monday, September 26

Blue Planet

So I uploaded a bunch of Blue Planet vids to my laptop...and I decided tonight that whenever I can't sleep I'll watch them.

Well I just watched the "Amazon Abyss." Like I feel like going to sleep now. Heck NO! Sweet little nightmarluby. (like lullaby but nightmarelaby?)

The last clip was of a bunch of Paranas devouring a large dead fish they put down in the water. So awesomely disturbing. Maybe that one was the worst of all the Blue Planets.

Saturday, September 24

Sundance Harvest

Today my mommy, aunt, and cousins Al & Court went to the Sundance Harvest Market. The Market was o.k. and the only reason why I didn't hate it was because they had owls, mini owls, and hawks there! So beautiful to observe. Last but not least, the lift was AMAZING!

Thursday, September 22

I am suffering

from a mild concussion.

The worst part of it is how it happened. My co-workers joke that it sounds just like a story a fifth grader would tell.

I was playing in my friend's back yard. We were playing a spinning game we like to call "teacups"
She dared me to go over her footbridge playing teacups. So I did and she followed, spinning across the river. I was spinning slowly but decided to go a bit faster, seeing I was about over. Well I flew toward the river, hit my head on a rock, my heel on another, and splash. My bottom half was soaked and my head had hot liquid coming out. I didn't black out or anything, but driving the next day and the random tears show that I probably should just take it easy. I'm glad I didn't bite off my tongue or die or anything.

Monday, September 19

New York tastes good.

We did a bunch of other fun stuff that I look back on and really enjoy. But my favorite things were pretty basic. Like just walking around Central Park and the city. Oh and eating. I took a picture of everything I ate. Here are my favorites. Now you just have to go to New York and try them!


raspberry crumble muffin from Magnolia Bakery

Eggs Flourentine from Norma's. Those are widdle potatoes. Aren't they adorable?

Chocolate Decadence French Toast from Norma's
Alex Guarnaschelli is in chocoholic heaven at Norma's at Le Parker Meridien in New York, NY, with the Chocolate Decadence French Toast, on the best thing I ever ate.


Margarita from Grimaldi's. The best pizza in the world in my humble opinion.

White Pizza from Grimaldi's, the best pizza I've ever had...tied with the above.

Margarita from Lombardi's, the father of pizza in NYC



Pastrami "Reuben" at Katz's Deli...meat was a bit dry but the experience of going after seeing it on tv was fantastic. The "pastrami reverand" that was on emeril loved me.

Cheese sandwich from E.A.T. Cafe. Best "cheesy" thing Barefoot Contessa has ever ate.


Crack Pie from Momofuku milk bar. Addicting? Yes. I get weekly shipments. jk but I should.


Red Velvet Cake from Cake Man Raven. Best red velvet in the world...other than my mom's.

More pastries. Ferrara Bakery.
Ferrara Bakery in New York, NY is
a favorite of Alex Guarnaschelli on Food Network's The Best Thing I Ever Ate.

I am proud to say I gained 10 pounds within that 5 day period. And I've lost 7 since. I'll keep the existing 3 as a souvenir.

Monday, August 1

I am going to New York

In 9 DAYS!!! For the first time in my whole life!

for a period of 4.5 days.

Any recommendations for (listed in order of importance) restaurants, tourist sights, art museums, and shopping? Please comment or email! Thank ya.

Friday, July 29

Science Teachers + Me = Disaster Series

Humans that I've encountered that are my teachers in any science usually don't like me. I have always really enjoyed science. Yet I am always confused at my grades...they don't match up. I think I know why. Let's take a walk through memory lane, shall we?:

5th Grade Science. Mr. Jacobs. We had an actual science teacher. It's not like today where a cute, nice teacher like myself teaches my children nearly all subjects. This man had hair growing out his ears. I remember a look he had, saved especially for me. A look that said, in essence, "Who the H are you? Why do you think that way? You are an alien."

7th and 8th Grade Science. Mr Barker. I pity the man after I was finished with him. I argued with him, even when I reached the point that I knew he was right. I did my own experiments, not necessarily assigned. Some of which got me detention. Like sliming glue all over my left hand, letting it dry, and peeling it off ever so carefully. What a cool sensation. And an excellent mold of the crevices of my hand. He didn't think so.

10th Grade. Mr. Belnap. The girl next to me kept making comments about "chemistry" that had nothing to do with science. She was kind of ditsy and hoey. So obviously my male teacher teased her and I lived under her shadow all year. Thank you, ditsy hoe.

11th Grade. Oh yes. Chemistry with Mr. Shelton. He was definitely my favorite. This was a special year, because I wasn't the one the teacher hated. He acted like he hated everyone. Which was so entertaining and I hope to aspire to such a reputation. If you sneezed or coughed, he would say "Shhhhh" and "Shut up." If you asked a question, he would leave a long pause after, so you felt the humiliation of your dumbness. Other kids would laugh to ease the tension. He would move on with his lecture and a straight face without any verbal reinforcement.
But he was special because we knew he loved us and that was his humor. And that made him one of my favorite teachers of all time. It didn't help my grade, but the C- is definitely one of my fondest grades.

College teachers don't count because they don't have time to care about any single student. And elementary education science...well that was impossible to not love.

But right now. This week. I am at a science training up north all week. And of course, of all the teachers training with me, the teacher/professor picks on ME most of all.
He calls me different names to spite me
He will not tell me if I am right or wrong
He makes fun of anywhere south of Salt Lake (he's an idiot)
I actually made a list of things I don't want to do in my own class because he makes me feel like an evil, misbehaved kid. I don't get this from any other teacher! OK I can think of TWO others. But always in science.
So I just read books during his lectures. Luckily we meet in a school library, so I started the Fablehaven series. I love love love it. Already on the 2nd book.

Wednesday, July 13

Harry Potter Countdown

I decided to do something drastic. And I am so glad I decided to make that decision.

I am having/have had a Harry Potter marathon, one move a night, for seven nights, until the final film comes out!

I may or may not have taken the projector I had in my classroom and used it to watch HP in my back yard on a nice big screen. It is so much cooler to watch HP outside.

Let's share the recipes I used!
Butter Beer

The first night I had cream-soda floats (vanilla ice-cream and cream soda) then you mix in butterscotch topping. Then I made something from scratch which peeps seemed to enjoy as well:

What you need:

1 cup light or dark brown sugar

2 tablespoons water

6 tablespoons butter

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon cider vinegar

¾ cup heavy cream, divided

Four 12-ounce bottles cream soda

Make it: In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the brown sugar and water. Bring to a gentle boil and cook, stirring often, until the mixture reads 240 F on a candy thermometer. Stir in the butter, salt, vinegar and ¼ heavy cream. Set aside to cool to room temperature. In a medium bowl, combine 2 tablespoons of the brown sugar mixture and the remaining ½ cup of heavy cream. Use an electric mixer to beat until just thickened, but not completely whipped, about 2 to 3 minutes.

To serve, divide the brown sugar mixture between 4 tall glasses (about ¼ cup for each glass). Add ¼ cup of cream soda to each glass, then stir to combine. Fill each glass nearly to the top with additional cream soda, then spoon the whipped topping over each. — By Heather Witherspoon, McClatchy Newspapers

After a few nights of Butterbeer, I thought I'd try making Pumpkin Juice! In Harry Potter world, it is served in a bottle with the ingredients listed. I thought it was repulsive to be honest with you. Too strong! The spices were overpowering my pumpkin pumpkin! But I remember the first ingredient was apple juice, so I bought a gallon of that, mixed in a half can of pumpkin pie filling, added a heaping teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice, and mixed it all together with a beater. I am off sugar so I never tasted it, but the guests said it was good! I'll take their word for it.

I also had:

  • Licorice Wands (strawberry twizzlers)
  • Chocolate frog kisses (hershey kisses)
  • Every-flavor beans (jelly beans...the real ones are costly)

My mom showed me this blog and it blew me away. And I thought I was being creative!

I get to see HP7 part 2 at 6pm tomorrow! Before even you eastern time peeps! I am so excited. But sad that it's the last.

Happy 400th Post!!!

If you have read all 400 posts, I have a gift for you!!!

Tuesday, July 5

Funny thing I like to think about when I am driving

One time, Gina got a new car. And on the visor it had a note talking about the airbags and warnings that go along with them, etc. She pointed to the visor. "So cool. There is an airbag in there."