Monthly Archives: February 2014

Are we raising a society of enabled kids?

Let me start by saying that I love my job, and as a teacher I try my hardest to do whatever it takes to help students be successful and not make excuses and complain (like the people I mention in this post). I just got to thinking the other day about what the heck in the world I can do in order to make my students WANT to do well in school, and realize that they CAN achieve whatever they want if they truly try. Aaaand I’m not ashamed to do a little late link up with one of my FAV bloggers Amanda for her Thinking Out Loud post.

Thinking-Out-Loud

I already mentioned some of my previous motivators, one of them being bacon, but believe it or not, I don’t want my students to only do homework because that means they’ll get bacon.

I want them to WANT to do the work.

As a teacher I do A LOT to try to inspire kids to try their hardest, but sometimes I feel my efforts are wasted. Again, I’m not trying to place blame or make excuses, but it seems like many students that I encounter have way more excuses than I do.

And it also feels like they like playing the victim, doing the least amount of work possible, and getting rewarded for simply doing what they are asked to do.

Don’t get me wrong, I also have a ton of amazing, over achieving, kind, talented students as well, I’m speaking in generalities as a result of my teaching experiences for the last 5 years in several different districts.

Kids don’t just come up with ideals, values, and work ethic on their own. They learn it. Not only from their parents and teachers, but from society at large. You have to wonder if the things our society values are affecting the attitudes, values and behavior of the people who hold the future of our world in their hands.

It constantly amazes me how some kids will recite, word for word, a popular TV commercial, but cannot recall the subject of the paper we’ve been writing for two weeks.

That when I notice 30 minutes into the period (because I’m so busy) that a particular student has been sitting there doing nothing because she doesn’t have a pencil. Like seriously!?!?!?? You just sat here for 30 minutes because you don’t have a pencil?

What if I simply just didn’t show up for work one day because I didn’t have a car. Yet I didn’t do anything about it. I didn’t call for a ride….I didn’t leave in time to take the bus…I didn’t start walking….I just sat there on the couch and stared aimlessly at the floor until someone asked what I was doing?

You have to wonder if our country and society, who seems to reward people who do the least and punish people who work the hardest, isn’t fostering this type of behavior. Why get a job when you could probably just get government assistance and sit home and do nothing? Why try hard in school when you can simply become successful by being a hot mess on some reality show? Why are these the role models that are acceptable for our children?

Not naming any names….

I’ll tell you I’m scared to bring a child into a world that thinks appearing drunk on a reality show is the epitome of happiness and success. Our kids expect instant success, immediate gratification, and expect to get high rewards for little risk.

I listened to an NPR podcast describing how we, as a Western culture, don’t value struggle as much as Eastern cultures (most specifically Asian cultures). We think that someone is either “smart” or “dumb”. If you are struggling with something, you are dumb and might as well give up. Eastern cultures consider struggling and perseverance as more valuable than simple intelligence. The podcast suggested this as a reason for Asian students succeeding so much in American schools. They are willing to try, persevere and struggle, while the American student is taught that if you’re struggling, it means you’re stupid and it’s something to be ashamed of.

Who is out there teaching that struggle is valuable? That hard work WILL pay off in the end, and you NEED to go above and beyond and constantly try to be better in order to get ahead in life. I feel like when most of my students face things they struggle with they give up and start playing flappy bird on their Ipads.

Anyway, at the risk of you completely abandoning this post (if you already didn’t) because I could probably go on forever about this, I’ll end it here and hope that I’ve given you something to think about. And again, I don’t want to make it seem like I’m complaining. I know the missing link. I, as a teacher, have to work tirelessly creating meaningful, authentic, engaging and FUN activities to create drive in my students. To be honest that’s what I love about being a teacher and I’m okay with that task. It’s not always easy to do every day when you’re being pulled in 10 different directions, but since I DO value struggle, I think I’ll keep working on it.

 

Thoughts? Do you think our society encourages enabling behavior?

Is it the school or the parent’s job to teach kids the value of hard work?

 

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Coconut What? A Guide to Coconut Products

Coconut butter? Oil? Aminos? Flour? Are you having trouble keeping them all straight?!?! I sure did when I first started cooking. I had no idea what the difference between coconut oil and coconut butter was- let alone what to use each of them for. I found myself today with most of the coconut products I use in my household, so I though I’d share each type and what I use it for. This would be helpful if you’re just getting into health/paleo cooking and you’re not sure what each thing is used for!

*Disclaimer- affiliate links included!

guide to coconut products 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coconut Butter
Coconut Butter

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is my favorite type of coconut! I regularly like to eat it directly out of the jar with a spoon. However during cold weather, it stays hard so you have to warm it up to get it into a “butter” consistency. I usually warm it up to and top my sweet potatoes or carrot fries with it, eat it on banana bread. But this stuff is so good you will find it hard to resist just eating it straight from the jar. Since it is the actual coconut meat- the coconut taste is very strong.

Coconut Oil

coconut oil

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is the stuff you want to use while cooking- since olive oil or vegetable oil should NOT be used when you’re heating food up. It also stays in solid form when it’s cold. If you live somewhere warm you probably won’t have this problem. I usually take a glass cup and melt the oil in the microwave, and then pour it over whatever I’m cooking. If I’m sauteing food, I just put a big glob into a pan and let it melt, then add the food. I’ve also used coconut oil in baking, and I do the same melt-in-the-microwave technique. Some oils I’ve used DO taste like coconut (the extra virgin kind), but I’ve also had some that don’t. This particular brand I got on sale at Marshall’s and I’ve never had before, but I like it strong coconut flavor it has! If you don’t like coconut and don’t want the taste, try this brand.

Coconut Aminos

coconut aminos

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I don’t use this that often, it’s kind of expensive, however this is a Paleo-approved type of ‘soy sauce’. You can use it as a substitute for soy sauce in any Asian-type recipe. Add it to stir fry, or soups to add a deeper flavor. I like to make the Paleo Pad Thai from the 21 Day Sugar Detox with this- it has an amazing flavor. I have never eaten this stuff straight up so I have no idea if it tastes like coconut- I use it with other flavors that are strong.

Coconut Flour

Coconut Flour

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I definitely need this at ALL times in my house. It is a substitute for regular flour, but be careful because coconut flour CANNOT be used 1:1 in recipes with white flour. I add a tablespoon of coconut flour to banana or plantain pancakes, make zucchini fritters, banana bread, and to make some paleo-approved goodies when I feel like it. This is a DEFINITE must for your healthy kitchen. Some things I make with coconut flour will retain a slight coconut taste- but for the most part you can’t taste the coconut flavor too much- depending on the brand. I usually use this one.

 

Shredded Coconut

Shredded Organic Coconut

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last but not least, shredded unsweetened coconut can be used to make your OWN coconut butter (if you’re patient). I also use it to make energy balls or top my paleo cereal with it. If you like coconut, these are good to have on hand.

 

What’s your favorite type of coconut product?

Do you like the taste of coconut?

 

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Great food, great vacation

What do you think of when you think of vacation? With the terribly frigid weather we’ve been having, you’d think I would love to go back to the Dominican Republic?

honeymoon (2)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other places on the wish-travel list: Key West

 

 

 

 

I’ve always wanted to try New Orleans- food vacation!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Also- I am definitely planning on making it back to California at some point.

 

 

 

But not this vacation….this one was spent in the lovely, scenic……

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Syracuse, NY. Don’t laugh. It’s my home town. And to be quite honest it was the perfect place to spend my relaxing five days off. They have Wegmans. Duh.

 

 

Anyways, over break I ate some amazing food. That’s what being in an actual city and having a lot of time on your hands does. So I thought I’d share. First up, another visit to Gordon Biersch. Yum. Sweet potato fries with this AMAZING “brown butter cream cheese”. It was to die for.

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Another great beer oriented restaurant we went to was World of Beer in Destiny USA. We had really been looking forward to going here. The food was to be honest nothing to write home about but I had a couple of great beers there (obviously). I started with a Left Hand Milk Stout Nitro, and then I had a Founder’s Oatmeal Stout Nitro. I don’t know what it is with me and stouts. It’s so filling and thick but I love it, especially this time of year. The hubby went with a couple of IPAs. I like IPAs but for some reason they sort of taste like flowers to me! Very hoppy.

I had some bratwurst on a pretzel roll, which was fine. But the star of the show (besides the beer) was the kale-apple coleslaw! Definitely going to try to recreate that cole slaw!

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The hubby went with a BBQ Pizza flatbread. I didn’t try it but he enjoyed it. The prices weren’t outrageous. We spent more on the beer than the food. Woops. It was good!

I already shared this photo in my previous post but another great meal was at Bittersweet in downtown Syracuse. This place is so cute and I always want to go when I go home to visit but never make it. Their desserts are amazing! They had a deal for Syracuse dining week which was a glass of wine and a dessert for $10. So worth the extreme sugar rush!

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Chocolate chip cookie cake sundae. Omgggggggg.

Moving on, I also managed to cook a couple meals while I was home, one being an amazing recipe from a new-to-me blog that I am loving lately, Lexi’s Clean Kitchen. I made her Easy Ciopinno Stew for my family and everyone loved it. Highly recommended!

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Well that’s my vacation in a nutshell. Back to school today! Hoping for some Syracuse basketball redemption as well.

What’s your favorite type of beer?

What places are on your travel “wish list”?

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3 ideas for easy, healthy weekend breakfasts

Imagine this: waking leisurely without an alarm. Strolling downstairs and brewing a fresh cup of coffee and sipping it while casually reading blogs and waking up. Stretching, doing some yoga and a heart pumping workout for the day. And then preparing yourself a flavorful, healthy, filling breakfast.

This has been my life for the past 7 days. I love vacation. One of the perks of being a teacher- seems like every other week is a week off. Good for getting in some relaxation and diminishing my stress- bad for students actually retaining knowledge. You win some, you lose some.

When I have some extra time in the morning, and on weekends, I like to prepare a nice big healthy breakfast with lots of veggies to keep me full. Especially when I have a huge sugar hangover from eating this the night before:

 

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Cookie Cake Sundae with Vanilla Ice Cream

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

But anyway back to the healthy breakfast thing……

Weekdays consist of heating up a casserole for breakfast, and weekends for me usually mean pancakes. Like this, or these……or even these.

But sometimes I want something more filling. Even when pancakes contain whole food ingredients, I often find myself searching through the cabinet and fridge shortly after eating them.

You can create an easy, healthy breakfast by using vegetables you have on hand, and some eggs. All it takes is some chopped vegetables, spices and eggs and you have a nice healthy breakfast. I usually eat it with some fruit on the side as well and it keeps me full for most of the day.

Meal #1:

Roasted Brussels sprouts (with salt, pepper and garlic salt), roasted sweet potato (with cinnamon), sautéed peppers and onions, and two over easy eggs with a side of avocado.

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Meal #2:

Sautéed kale, peppers, onions and mushrooms with garlic, and scrambled eggs mixed with almond milk.

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eggs, kale and mushrooms

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meal #3:

Crispy kale and garlic, eggs over easy and olives (strange but good). I ate a grapefruit and paleo biscuit on the side.

eggs kale and olives

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So I’ve been watching music videos all morning…..I don’t watch them that often but isn’t it such an annoying cop out when the musician does the whole “let’s just play a video of me singing this song at a concert” type music video? Laaaaame. Anyways, have a happy Friday and weekend!

 

Go Cuse! Beat Duke!!!

What are you favorite weekend breakfasts?

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What I ate on Valentine’s Day

Over the last two weeks, in my five ELA classes the homework completion percentage rate is averaging around 50%. Yeah. It’s a problem. That’s why I’ve resorted to what you’re about to see. I decided to link up with Jen from Peas and Crayons this week for the infamous blogger foodie party, WIAW.

 

 

What I ate on Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day was also the last day of school before winter break, which makes for very hyper kids, so I thought it would be an amazing idea to rev them up further by making and bringing a treat….

Bacon Party

Well actually, I had a contest going between my five classes to see who did the most homework over the course of two weeks. The winning class was promised a reward. Since the class that won was 1st period, I decided on a breakfast theme. I got several kinds of cereal, baked brownies for those kids who didn’t mind the sugar rush, and…also….bacon.

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I hope the kids learned an important lesson:

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It’s not a bribe….I like to think of it as a “motivator”. I’m at a loss with what to do in order to stay on top of these kids so they do their homework. It seems like everything I do is to no avail. I’ve tried everything. I’m resorting to bacon people. Help!

When I got home I got to work on our dinner:

Filet Mignon with balsamic glaze

Roasted Asparagus

Paleo Chocolate Cake

I’m telling you it was one of the best meals I’ve eaten in a while. I’m over going out to dinner.

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I shared most of these pictures on Instagram and Facebook so if you follow me I’m sorry for the repeats!! It was just too good not to share.

For the balsamic glaze I first sauteed half an onion and some minced garlic in some coconut oil, added 1/4 cup tomato paste and let it meld together, then added about a half cup of black cherry balsamic vinegar. OMG. I used my flavored balsamic vinegar from Olive a Sudden. No affiliation- my BFF works there in Cali and they are amazing. The sweetness of the cherry balsamic paired perfectly with the steak.

The star of the night was the Paleo chocolate cake. I followed this recipe, but whipped up my own frosting, which was hands down the best chocolate frosting I have ever eaten Paleo or not.

Paleo Chocolate Frosting

Paleo Chocolate Frosting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 oz of 100% bittersweet chocolate

Cream on top of 1 can of full fat coconut milk, set in the fridge for at least 30 minutes

2 tablespoons of coconut sugar

1 tablespoon of coconut oil

Place a metal bowl and whisk in the freezer for 30+ minutes before starting. Melt the chocolate and coconut oil in a double boiler over the stove and set aside. When the bowl is ready and chocolate is a bit cooled,  take the coconut milk and spoon out the top, hardened portion into the bowl. Leave the water to put in smoothies, or another recipe! Whip the milk in with a stand mixer or whisk until fluffy. Then add the melted chocolate. Keep whipping as you add the coconut sugar. Scrape down the sides if needed.

This is by far the best frosting I’ve ever tasted! So rich and delicious. You could probably add some vanilla extract as well, which I kind of forgot to do! Whoops!

yum!

paleo chocolate cake

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yes, my chocolate cake looks like dog poop, thank you very much. Hey, does that matter? No. Why? Because it was FREAKING DELICIOUS. Someone SERIOUSLY needs to give me a free lesson in food photography. Seriously, please don’t judge me. The grossest looking food usually tastes the best, right?

What did you eat on Valentine’s Day???

 

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A week’s worth of Paleo meals

Happy President’s Day! Hope you are enjoying your day (or week for me! Bahaaahahahhaa the joys of being a teacher) off if you have one. I also hope that you watched my first, really embarrassing, cut off at the end video I made last week about what I got at the grocery store! I promise you can at least laugh on my behalf even if you don’t care about Paleo meal planning….

Today I will share the meals that I made with that particular grocery haul. Remember I spent $100 not including money previously spent on meat for two people. Yes, seems like a lot. I feel like it will get better once veggies and fruit become more seasonal. For now I just deal with it.

So here’s what I made:

Breakfast plan

My husband doesn’t eat breakfast, so I don’t have to worry about him……I make him a dozen boiled eggs on Sunday and he grabs them to go if needed but most of the time he doesn’t. He has a much different (and enviable) metabolism than me.

I typically make the frittata on Sunday and eat it every day. I also roast the veggies so they are easily warmed up. I have a healthy serving of nut butter with the roasted veggies for my fats…which I’m trying to cut back on but have no self control. On Saturday and Sunday, I think you know what I have.

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Enough said.

 

Lunches

The soup was so good! You should check out Nom Nom Paleo if you haven’t… so good! Again, everything is made on Sunday so I just grab and go.

I thought I made enough for the five days but when it came down to it I didn’t so luckily Friday there were some leftovers.

Husband has sandwiches with lunch meat and rolls I showed you in the video for lunch. He also has a banana or apple with some chips.

dinner

Dinner is where I have some variation from day to day. I like burgers because my  husband always asks for them and I can stretch 1 lb of ground beef for two days. I’m also addicted to carrot fries. Here’s what my prep bunch looked like Sunday:

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I got the Chicken Mole recipe from a blog online and was really excited but it wasn’t the best recipe…..I think it was my fault. I used 100% unsweetened cocoa and the recipe called for 70-80%. I didn’t use any sweetener. I should have added honey.

If you notice I don’t really have snacks. I eat pretty well on my three meals so I’m just not hungry for them. This is something I really perfected during the Whole 30. I used to eat 6-7 times a day but that’s just annoying. When I eat enough at meals there’s no need for a snack. Sometimes when I have a harder workout I’ll grab a hard boiled egg or something. And sometimes I cave and have an after dinner snack (had half my beet cake two nights this week). I know it’s not necessary though, it usually it’s just habit, so I try  not to. But who can resist cake? 😉

 

Well there you have it, a week’s worth of Paleo meals for 1….and some non-paleo meals for the hubby. Stay tuned next week for Paleo meal planning – Food Prep Sunday!

How do you vary your meals throughout the week?

Do you think snacks are necessary?

What are your favorite go-to lunches?

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“Red Velvet” Beet Waffles and Chocolate Ganache

Yes you read that right…..BEET waffles. Yum! I’ve seen a few Paleo recipes for desserts with beets in them. I bought some beets at the store last week and knew I wanted to try a dessert-type recipe. I decided on waffles. I have made a beet waffle recipe before and I remember it being good so decided to re-create my own! This is similar to the sweet potato waffles I posted last year- but these are MUCH sweeter. Yea……this isn’t my average breakfast. If you’re going to eat them for breakfast I recommend including a protein! I actually ate them as a dessert. And when I had leftover batter I put it into a little ramekin and ate it as a cake. Boom.

So I guess you could call this a “Red Velvet” Beet Waffle/Cake. However you want to eat it, it’s delicious, moist (sorry), and a perfect treat for Valentines Day! Happy V day lovers!

Red Velvet Waffles

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You’ll Need:

About 3/4 cup steamed, pureed beets (About two small beets or one large)

2 eggs

3 tablespoons raw honey

1 tablespoon full fat coconut milk

2 tablespoons coconut flour

1/4 cup cocoa powder

2 tablespoons coconut sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

dash of salt

1. The beets will take about 20 minutes in boiling water (peel and dice them first) to soften up.

2. Once your beets are cooked and cooled a bit, place them in a food processor with the eggs, honey and coconut milk.

3. Sift in the dry ingredients and mix everything together.

4. Pour in a heated waffle iron (OR in a small cake pan? if desired) and cook for about 5-7 minutes. I left my waffle in the iron about two minutes past the time it said it was “done”.

Chocolate Beet Waffles

Ya- I probably could have had some more decorative things to top it with…maybe some strawberries or something….but to be quite honest everything I post is food I actually eat. I don’t spend a lot of time gussy-ing it up for the camera because I’m more worried about shoving into my mouth. #sorrynotsorry

These aren’t traditional crispy waffles, more fluffy and cake-like. That’s why I decided to pour the rest of my batter into a little mini-ramekin and bake for about 20 minutes until it was done. Then I made a yummy chocolate ganache for the top. It was absolute heaven.

cake with chocolate frosting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chocolate Ganache (Paleo)

2 squares of unsweetened bakers chocolate

1 teaspoon coconut oil

1 teaspoon raw honey (mine was mint-chocolate flavored!!!!!)

Melt everything in a double boiler and pour over your cake. OMMMGGGGGG

beet cake

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Again, these pictures are atrocious but I wasn’t planning on sharing the cake- it just happened!!!! Man it was so tasty though, looks aside. If you want to try this recipe and cook it in a regular loaf pan or cake pan, I would pour the whole thing in and cook for about 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes clean. OR muffins ??? The possibilities are endless. Beets really give your cake a nice moist texture. Sorry if you hate that word, I said it twice.

Have you ever tried beets in a dessert? Have you ever tried beets period?!?!?

Give me some tips to improve my food photography!!! I’m desperate!

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Paleo Meal Planning

Welcome to Paleo Meal Planning: Part 1.

People ask me ALL THE TIME how budget my time and money eating a whole foods diet. To me it’s not hard but it’s certainty not easy. It’s something that has been a gradual process. The first step I always take is to look in the fridge and see what I already have. Then I begin looking at the grocery ads for the local grocery stores and see what I can plan around that’s on sale. We are still working on the 1/4 of a cow that we got in December so I don’t really buy meat unless I see stuff on sale like seafood or chicken.

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I will detail my entire meal plan in another post, but for today I have my first Vlog (Video Blog) !! I set up my You Tube channel the other day because I am putting up the educational videos that I make for my students, and I kind of wanted to test out a “food related” video. I’ve seen bloggers do this before and I think it’s a fun and different idea so I set out everything that I bought this week at the store and explained how I went about getting the most for my money!

 Sorry, after multiple takes the video cuts out right at the end because my camera battery died. Woops- fail. But I thought the rest of the video turned out alright. Turn up your volume because the audio isn’t the best either. I promise I’ll get better!!!

 

 ***So at the end I started talking about meat- as I said we have beef in the freezer so I plan meals around that. The other “protein” sources I buy that I don’t have in the video (because they had to go straight to the fridge) were 3 dozen organic, cage-free eggs (I’m doing some baking for V-Day this week!!), Applegate Farms chicken breast for  my husband’s lunches, some anti-biotic free chicken tenders and bagged shrimp that was on sale.

turkey

grocery

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No, everything is not organic. Everything is not cage-free, grass fed, pastured, plated with gold, infused with tears of angels-perfect. I do what I can. If you’ll notice none of my produce was organic today. It is what it is. I am not going to pay $3 for an organic bell pepper. I just can’t right now. I don’t really feel bad about it. Today I got organic crushed tomatoes but last week I got regular because it didn’t fit in the budget for the week. It’s just whatever I feel I can splurge on that week I get. I figure if I’m at least trying that’s better than nothing. And meats and eggs are always prioritized, as you can see. Just do what you can and sooner or later you will figure out what you are and are not willing to sacrifice.

By the way- Go SU!

Stay tuned for more Paleo Meal Planning posts!

What strategies do you use to get the most for your money at the grocery store?

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What am I supposed to do?

I am just sort of writing out my feelings today…..so bear with me.

We all hear the stories in the news…gunmen at schools….another school shooting. You really don’t think about these things until they happen. Then everyone can’t stop talking about them. Whenever “another school shooting” happens it hits particularly close to home being a teacher. You stop to question and wonder if you are really making a difference. If you can make a difference. You start second guessing yourself. Did I make anyone feel alone today? Did I make sure that I smiled at every kid that walks through my door?

A constant question that is on everyone’s minds whenever a tragedy like this happens is
why didn’t anyone say anything? Why didn’t the parent, a teacher, a friend notice that this person was in pain? That they needed help and felt alone. Then the blame game starts. ______________ should have done this. ______________ should have known. It’s society. It’s kids these days. It’s video games.

I constantly start to question if I’m doing enough. You never want to be in a situation where you felt like you should do something but you don’t and then the unspeakable happens. But this is where I feel like I fall short.

What am I supposed to do?

The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing. ~Albert Einstein

source

The reason I’m writing this is because I have two particular students that I feel are lost and alone. I don’t know what to do. I can’t break the barrier of communication with them. They won’t talk to me. I do everything I can to show them I am there, that I care. But I’m afraid it comes off contrived and fake. I genuinely DO care- but I honestly don’t know how to force a relationship with a student. If this student and I don’t normally talk and discuss things, it feels awkward to all of a sudden be all up in their business.

sad quotes about bullying - Google Search

So what then? Am I doing enough? It’s something that’s not sitting well with me. I know there are school professionals that are trained to handle these things and notifying them is something I also do- however sometimes I feel it gets pushed aside.

I am just one person. I can only do what I can do. I should feel satisfied with that- but I don’t. I’m not sure what I’m trying to prove here- just basically wanted to get this off my chest. I hope that in the long run people recognize the importance of helping others if you think they’re lost and alone. Even though you’re only one person- you never know who you might help.

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What actions do you think need to be taken to help the issue of school shootings?

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Why a personal trainer is worth the money

This weekend I read a post over at Athena’s blog, Fitness and Feta, about the dangers of online fitness challenges. It ind of sparked something in me and inspired me to think out loud today….thanks for the link up Amanda!

Thinking-Out-Loud

With all the fitness blogs, DVDs, websites, and fitness pics on Pinterest, you probably think that hiring a personal trainer, or seeking professional advice regarding your workouts is definitely not worth the high price tag. I’ll admit, I never used to think so. But as a I recently discussed, I have been working out with a personal trainer since the beginning of December. It is definitely one of my largest monthly bills. Why shell out all that money when I can just go online to Pinterest or someone’s blog and get any type of workout you could imagine? I’ll tell you why!

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Don’t even get me started on running- it’s been ages since I have been able to run.

 

I am not a fitness professional! I don’t know the proper techniques on what muscles to work this day, or how many reps to do for endurance/strength, etc. The only thing I know about fitness is what exercises work what muscles. That’s pretty much it. Once upon a time every day I went onto Pinterest and picked a workout to do. Something that sounded hard- like it would tire me out. I did that most days. And guess what? I injured myself.

I injured myself so badly from pushing myself doing workouts without supervision that I will probably be dealing with the injury for the rest of my life. You know how when you read blogs there is a disclaimer- yeah that’s there for a reason.

There might be plenty of qualified, knowledgeable individuals or bloggers who post daily workouts and things. And I’m not discounting their knowledge at all. I’m just saying that doing one workout from one blog on one day, then picking up a DVD and doing something else the next may work the same muscles you did the day before- and puts you at risk for an overuse injury. An overuse injury is one that put stress on a certain part of the body a little at a time over a long period of time. Common examples are jumpers knee, tendonitis, stress fractures, and issues associated with ligament laxity (which is what I have in my back/hip).

Working out means putting stress on the body. And if you’re not doing it in a responsible, calculated, strategic way under the supervision of a professional, you’re liable to hurt yourself. It’s things like this I see on Pinterest (that I literally used to do) that scare me:

15 min workout

Burpees and squat press are exercises that, if you aren’t doing them in the proper form, can be very detrimental to the same muscle groups.

no nonsense circuit

I’m pretty sure over-doing lunge jumps, squat jumps and burpees is how I ended up with my injury: SI Joint Dysfunction.

Fit

I can’t stand high-rep fitness challenge things I see on Pinterest. Doing 100-200 squats a day probably isn’t the best thing.

Again I am not trying to discount anyone who has ever put up one of these on her blog (I did too!!) I am just saying that when it comes to your body, and especially those who are lifting heavy weights, it might be best to seek the advice of a professional. There are plenty of blogs that offer affordable, online based personal training too- and I think that’s great. I think it’s great if you have a professional advising you with a workout plan and schedule. That way you know you are not over using one muscle group and they can instruct you on the proper form.

I unfortunately know from experience that it IS worth it to shell out the money for at least a program designed by a professional, if not a personal trainer. I urge you to consider this before you just grab another workout from Pinterest to do!

Thoughts? Do you think it is worth it to pay someone to design workouts?

What affordable, reliable sources of workout programs do you know of?

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