Just Another Manic Monday

Guess what?! I can read!

Yeah. I already knew that, too. I was called to the office multiple times last week. One of them was because the results of the reading test I had to take (after two weeks of “tutoring”) had come in. I got a five, the highest level. I passed a reading test. Who would’ve guessed?

Last Monday I was called to the office to be notified of the authorization of my pre-excused absence for that Tuesday. I think they mispronounce my name 80% of the time over the intercom. That is, unless there is a “Christian” somewhere in my school with the same last name and schedule… Anyways, the absence was to attend a Veteran’s Day luncheon with my dad. And it couldn’t have come at a more convenient time! I got out of taking the ASVAB test (yet another standardized test!). I didn’t have that much work to make up, either.

I think that last week, my teachers all got together and decided to plan to give tests all at the same time. I had two difficult English tests, a geometry test, AND an unannounced chemistry test. It was not a good week to be Kristen. I have two more tests this week, too. Seriously, it has been so stressful. I had a hard time sleeping due to nightmares all weekend. That generally happens when I’m stressed. And then I stay awake trying to figure out what they meant, and that just makes it worse…. Yeah, not fun!

But today was much better. I didn’t want to wake up, though, because it forced me out of a dreamworld where I was not only going to a Heffron Drive concert every night for a week, but I was friends with the band and wandered between the front row and backstage at my leisure. It was much preferable to a Monday with chemistry class any day! At least I didn’t have any of those tests today. It was actually a relatively easy day. We had a really cool demonstration in chemistry where the teacher burned different elements in the Bunsen burner, and they gave off different colored flames, like fireworks. And we’ll get to try it for ourselves in the spring for our lab final (identifying elements in unmarked testubes). Yay…

     Hey, my favorite part of today: it’s almost TUESDAY NOVEMBER 19!! That, my friends, is the day I have been counting down to for over two months: the release of the book Staying Strong by Demi Lovato. I’m excited; can you tell? 🙂 I’m the person who tends to get really excited over things like CD or book releases. What can I say? I like to make countdowns.

But speaking of books, I fell in love and then had my heart broken last week. I read this completely amazing book called The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater over that weekend. The author’s exquisite writing style pulled me in, and her unique storyline and memorable characters kept me there. I was literally hanging on to every word until the final page. So, I got myself through the weekend by promising myself I’d go and get the sequel from the school library on Monday. I got through the day and to the library- no sequel. Feeling let down, I Christmas-listed both the books.

Now I’m reading a rather odd book about a girl who’s half dragon. I still have a good chunk of it left. Homework’s done, so I better get to reading. A hot cup of peppermint tea is calling my name…

Stay strong and fearless,

Kristen

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Can’t Think Of A Proper Title

     The last few minutes of Friday describes last week in a nutshell. I went to tutoring for the test I would be required to take this week, but I had already finished my online practice things for it a few days before. So, I got permission to go to my class. I went across the street to the elementary school. I finished the work for my teacher early and was alone in the room. Since I still had a few minutes, or so I thought, I entertained myself for a while before I left. According to the clock, I was fine.

     But the clock was wrong. I looked across the road at the high school and saw people pouring out. I fastwalked over as quickly as I could. When I finally got there, my bus was  nowhere to be found! I asked a security guard, and he pointed me towards the very back of the busline. Once I got to my bus, there was a line to get in, because we were being checked in by our substitute bus driver. I had made it just in time! 🙂

   Yesterday, Monday, test day… I had to report to a certain computer lab first thing yesterday morning for a required reading test make-up (because I didn’t take it in tenth grade). Like I expected, it was relatively easy, and I was finished before first period was even over. So, I got permission to return to my first period class, guitar. But of course, I hadn’t brought Earl that day because the test was supposed to take three hours.

     As I was walking in, I was just hoping I hadn’t missed much. But just my luck, they were talking about the test we’ll have tomorrow. Thankfully, my friends are good to me, and after he had finished talking they explained to me what they’d done. I was lent a book and a guitar, and I was able to practice. Exciting thing- one of the chords we’re learning this week is the last one I need to be able to play one of my current favorite songs- “I Want Crazy” by Hunter Hayes. 🙂

     After we cleaned up, I realized I was so hungry. I remembered my lunch plan- in my purse is a jar of Nutella and a bag of crackers. Yum… I sat by the door of the bandroom (where we are allowed to have food, away from the carpet!) and opened up my Nutella and ate my crackers. One of my friends came running over and asked if she could have some of it. She was so excited when I gave it to her that she was practically dancing. 🙂 

     I had the second half of that test today, and I am so relieved to just be able to finally wipe my hands of it. I thought I was done with tests, but just one more- PSAT next week. 😛 At least my schedule can go back to normal, though!

     I may have mentioned before that my geometry class is mostly comprised of freshman. Freshman can be really fun or really tiring. Last Friday we had a practice lockdown, and the teacher had all 25 of us hide in her large closet. To keep us quiet, she passed out lollipops. In a dark closet full of freshman eating a grape lollipop (yes, I am one of the strange people who actually like the grape ones)- definitely not how I’d expected to spend my Friday morning!

     Geometry today was insanity again. The teacher’s plans  and lesson had been erased by her computer, so she gave us a study hall day. For most people, that meant sitting on desks and talking or rolling around in the wheeled stool. But it was better than cutting and gluing for our “interactive notebooks” any day!

     But the highlight of my day is definitely having no homework (not including studying!). For me, that means I finally have time to do the things I want to do, like watch “Boy Meets World” and blog. 🙂

     Tomorrow’s a brand new day, and afterschool Bible study! Hopefully, my sister and I can find our way to the right pickup spot this time, not the middle of town or the short bus stop!

Stay strong and fearless,

Kristen

All Over Again

     Phew… What  a crazy, crazy week last week was! Now, it’s Monday morning, and time to do it all over again…

     Last week was Homecoming Week, like Spirit Week, but without the crazy games and competitions I experienced during private school Spirit Weeks. Ah, memories… Anyways, it was a week of dress-up days leading up to the Homecoming Game on Friday. Monday was Camo Day, and Tuesday was Sports Day. Wednesday, students wore pink and faculty wore black. I spent the day wondering how many people actually caught the reference to the quote from the movie “Mean Girls”: “On Wednesdays, we wear pink!”

     Thursday was Hippie Day. My sister had researched hippies online to make sure our costumes looked “authentic”. We had tie dye shirts and vests and leather jewelry and head wraps… The whole nine yards. Not too many people dressed up for Hippie Day, but it was still fun!! During our wait at the bus stop, I listened to Big Time Rush’s covers of several Beatles songs (recorded for a movie) with my iPod to get me in a ’60s mood.

     Friday was Spirit Day. I, unfortunately, own no dragons gear. So, I wore green, one of the school colors. The only green shirt I have is an old camp tshirt. I’ve sure got school spirit!

     Friday was probably the craziest day in a while! First period, I dragged stupid Earl (my guitar, not a person!) all the way to the band room at the end of the school, only to be told we didn’t need our guitars that day and to be handed a hall pass directing me to the computer lab on the opposite end of school (classic). I groaned, knowing instantly it was for a stupid computer practice test again. I went and got it over with. We did nothing the rest of the period. Second period was the Homecoming Parade! My personal favorite float depicted a dragon (our mascot) making an eagle (the team we played against) into KFC. There were also floats depicted an eagle roast and eagle noodle soup. 🙂

     The pep rally was last period. It was nuts! Each grade level had a class skit. Two of four involved guys dressed as girls and twerking (in case you don’t know what that means, it’s a very stupid kind of dancing). In three of four of the periods I was in Friday, people twerked, often for no reason. I just find it very strange and… awkward.

     But Friday ended on a high note when we fried the eagles and won our Homecoming Game! It was awesome, considering we rarely win and only scored twice (our school’s better at swimming and soccer!). It was definitely a game worth going to!

     Yet Friday was nothing compared to Wednesday. Afterschool, our church was starting up a youth Bible study. They were sending the bus to pick up kids from the Christian middle school downtown and from the middle and high school in the middle school parking lot. My sister and I had no idea where that was, so we kept following people we were sure were headed there. We ended up somewhere in the middle of town. We planned to go to the Christian school to see if we could still catch the bus. Thankfully, we saw the bus and were able to flag it down. They’d been looking for us 🙂

     We made it to Bible study in one picee. I was exhausted, considering I’d lugged Earl halfway through town! Hopefully, we can make it to the right place this week!

     I’m about to do the crazy week thing all over again. This time it isn’t Homecoming Week, but it promises to be a super busy week! My family and I are trying out karate classes this week, and we have a 4H meeting tomorrow, and Bible study tonight and Wednesday…. And a geometry test today and two English tests and a guitar test tomorrow… Maybe I can breathe on Friday!

     Well, here’s to Monday! Wish me luck as I do this crazy thing called the school week all over again!

Stay strong and fearless,

Kristen

     

Reflections On A Testing Week

This week has tested me. And I do mean that quite literally. It began with the Algebra EOC. It also threw me several English tests, a guitar test, and a chemistry test. And Friday surprised me with one more…

     I was sitting in Spanish class, about to use the last few minutes to study for the chemistry test when the office paged the teacher, requesting that “Christian” be sent to the office. We concluded that it had been a mispronunciation of my name, and I was sent to the front office. Fear gripped my heart as I walked. Why was a I, a well-behaved honor student, being sent to the office? It had never before happened in my life! Once I got in the office, I was sent to another room with two other students. A faculty member soon came in and gave us the news that we would be taking a certain standardized test in two weeks. Apparently, everyone in this state’s public school system takes this test sophomore year. I, however, spent my sophomore year in private school. If you didn’t pass the test in 10th grade, you can take it again junior year and senior year, and after that you keep taking it until you pass. It’s required for graduation.  I’ll be required to take the test because I did not take it in tenth grade. So, we were then told that we would be required to attend tutoring classes for this test last period on B days for the next two weeks. I groaned inwardly. Last period, interning, is one of my favorite classes. The woman then dismissed us but showed me where the classroom I’d be tutored in was located. I went out on a limb and asked if there was any way I could just take the test without the tutoring. It’s a reading comprehension test, which, again, honor student, I could pass it easily. I’m rather good at reading. But, no, the school required these small-group tutoring classes, so my fate  was already sealed. 😛

     When last period came, I went to the classroom. It was empty except for the tutor. He reminded me that I needed to check in with my teacher I’d have that period before I came. So, I went back and signed in for interning. but the teacher in charge wasn’t in her office. Deciding signing in was good enough, I found my way back to the room, which was now full with the four other members in my small group.

     I took my seat, read my papers, and did my practice questions. Simple. We waited for everyone else to be finished (We waited quite a while, mostly because one guy decided he needed a restroom break and probably got lost coming back). We went over the questions. I got every single one of them right. Why, I asked myself, did I need to even be here? 

     We were finished about half an hour before school let out, so the tutor sent us back to class. I, of course, did not have a class to go back to. Again not being able to find the teacher in her office, I did what I generally do when I get back from interning at that time. I sat outside with my iPod and a snack. It was nice, actually. At one point, a faculty member walked by and asked me who’s class I was in. I told him I’d gotten back from interning, and he went on his way. 

     I had another run-in with fear this week. I once read a book about kids who got kidnapped by a substitute bus driver (who wasn’t actually a real bus driver). I had thought to myself earlier in the week, “I hope that never happens to me. I hope I never have a substitute bus driver.” But low and behold, when I walked out to the bus Thursday after school, we had a sub. I triple-checked to make sure I was on the right bus before I warily made my way on board. I tried to shove the book from the back of my mind, but all I could really do was hope and pray. I also wanted to laugh at myself. Real life isn’t like movies or books, Kristen! 

     Quite obviously, everything was fine. I’m good, really. I’ve just got a couple (thousand!) more tests to study for this weekend. Well, I should’ve been doing that yesterday and today, but I am so easily distracted! 🙂 Somebody says the words “Big Time Rush” and whatever I was doing is suddenly forgotten…

     Whatever tests you encounter in life, take it in stride and look at the bright side: you are not being kidnapped by a bus driver. 🙂

Stay strong and fearless,

Kristen

Come In With the Rain

     I ran the block home from the bus stop in the rain, singing songs about rain. Now, you must understand, the rain here isn’t like rain anywhere else in the world. It storms out of the blue for 20 minutes, and then it’s sunny again. But of course, the mini-storms are always when you need to be outside. So, soaking wet, I was finally home, and very glad of it. 🙂

     I decided to spend my rainy afternoon baking cookies. Not just any cookies, but white chocolate chip macademia nut cookies, my absolute favorite food in almost all the world. I was very excited to discover we had some ready to bake dough in the fridge!! The storm finally stopped, but it still feels like a nice “lazy afternoon” kind of day. I’ll probably do one of my favorite things to do- curl up with a mug of hot green tea and my favorite blanket. Hey, maybe I’ll even remember to study for my two tests tomorrow 😉

     Today was an average Thursday but with an added frustration. I headed to third period chemistry just absolutely dreading my least favorite class. But, today, we were going to do a fun lab with M&M’s! But of course, this was the time they decided to call me in for my Algebra 1 EOC practice test. You see,  I took Algebra 1 at a school in a different state, and we just didn’t have this special end-of-course exam there. But according to the laws of this state, you have to take that test. So two years late, my sister and I get to make it up (first thing Monday morning. yay…). Anyways, the “practice test” was basically making sure we knew how to work a computer, which, quite obviously, I do.

     Once we finally got back to class, my sister and I caught up on the activity we were doing with the help of our lab partners. I believe I’ve mentioned them before… (They remind me of exactly the kind of people you’d expect in an honors chemistry class in a movie, making it a bit difficult to concentrate and not laugh sometimes 🙂 ). After we finished the activity, my sister and I sat and talked, much like the rest of the class was doing, except our lab partners. The two of them had a deck of cards and were playing a game that took up half the table. It took everything in me not to laugh. 🙂

     I am so glad to be home. I have little homework (none other than studying), and this wonderful thing called a weekend ahead of me. Just one more day! Hopefully it won’t storm tomorrow when I have to carry Earl, too!

Stay strong and fearless,

Kristen

#Awkward

Today was something alright… First of all, just letting you know I am the world’s worst guitar player in history. Granted, it is only my second time actually holding the thing, but still, I’m pretty sure I couldn’t be worse. I think the main problem is that my hands are small and and my dear Earl (my guitar) is rather large. We started doing the most basic notes in class today, and I am struggling to keep my stupid pinkie on the fretboard. But I know, I know, I’ll get better with practice and not everything’s going to come easily. Still, it was quite frustrating for nine in the morning….

Speaking of the morning, I’m pretty sure I almost fell off the bus backwards this morning when I was trying to shove Earl up that very narrow set of stairs to get in the bus. I’m terrified that one day I am just going to fall and him land right on top of me. We are almost the same size, after all.

Second period, geometry, my favorite class in the universe! (Yeah right). At least it’s pretty easy so far. I’m still allergic to math, though. We’re not friends, nor have we ever been.

Third period was English. In this class, I sit beside a football player. Last class, he was super hyper and talkative, which I thought was just because he was excited for the game that night. But, no, I found out today he must just be like that all the time. The funny part is he doesn’t talk to other students, he talks to the teacher, who is also rather easily distracted. After I answered a question right out loud, the football player entertained himself for an entire minute by singing me a victory song, along the lines of “You go girl, go shawty,” or something to that extent.

Halfway through English is lunch (yes, the dumbest schedule move ever, why not just have B lunch after third period??). I do not like A day lunch because I am without my best friend, my sister. So, like a typical A day, I sat at a table alone and unpacked my PB&J. Soon, though, a senior girl who’d been talking to one of her friends about how her other friends were mad at her sat in front of me. She asked my name and then told her friend, “See? I’m even meeting new people!” They continued to go on about her lunchtime drama for 20 minutes straight. After finishing my lunch, I went out to the commons (the main hall) and away from the awkward situation.

However, another awkward situation awaited me in the commons. I sat down on the steps to read my book for the remainder of lunch. A few minutes later, someone was sitting beside me. He scooted closer and moved away again. I glared up at him, and he left. It had been one of the same freshman boys who had on Friday decided to irritate me. His cohort then came over to me and said, “I’m sorry, my friend is stupid.” I responded without really thinking, “I can see that.” He then continued in mock concern, “Are you okay? You’re all alone.” I was like, “I’m fine; I’m reading my book.” And I walked away to find a peaceful place to read.

I think he must think I’m a freshman, too, and he probably only wants my attention. Naturally, the only time people really notice me me is when very immature freshman think I’m one of their own kind. It was very very irritating in the moment, but as I walked away I laughed to myself. It felt like the whole “my life is a bad made-for-TV-movie” thing all over again. It sure didn’t help my hunch that everyone thinks I’m a freshman, though.

Do you remember Quinn from “Zoey 101”? I think that’s what I look like with my glasses. She looked younger than the rest of them, because she was short, too. She was also awkward and individualistic. So many times today I thought I am Quinn. Well, she was also the smart one of the bunch, so maybe a comparison isn’t all that bad 🙂

In last period, World Music, we FINALLY didn’t listen to Michael Jackson!!! We actually cracked open the book and went over the first chapter. But for the last half hour of class we did nothing. So, I did my reading for English ( The Scarlet Letter, which I have already read and disliked). Finally, the bell rang, I grabbed Earl from the closet, and I dragged my stuff out to the bus. I was very pleased to find that the bus ride is the perfect length to listen to the entire Heffron Drive EP 🙂

So tonight I have homework, of course. Wish me luck as I embark on a journey into the worlds of my two least favorite subjects!! At least it can only go up from here, and if all else fails, tomorrow is a brand new day full of awkwardness and new adventures!

Stay strong and fearless,

Kristen

The Day I Had Two Lunches

     So, today was the first day of my junior year and my first day of starting public high school. I’ve been going to private school since the third grade, and my family moved last year. So, this year, my twin sister and I decided to try something different. Little did we know just what we were getting into….

     I rode the bus for the first time. I felt like a warrior going into battle. I was strong and fearless and nothing could stop me from having the best day of my life! We had started out the morning right by praying out loud at the bus stop. Surely, this “big yellow limousine,” as I called it in reference to a “The Suite Life of Zack and Cody” quote, was taking me to my next greatest adventure! I was ready for anything!

     The first two periods went rather well. I started out with guitar, something I’ve been wanting to learn for years. You can imagine how excited I am that our “homework” assignment is to research the guitarist from one of our favorite songs. Naturally, I knew instantly who I was going to pick (Dustin Belt of Heffron Drive, if you wanted to know).

     Then came geometry. Anyone who knows me well enough knows that any kind of mathematics and I are sworn enemies. I do fine in the class, I just don’t particularly enjoy it. The class is supposed to have 45 instructional minutes and 25 study hall minutes. There’s a random bell that rings halfway through. So, geometry went alright, and my sister and I headed to our lunch period.

     As I sat trying to eat my lunch at 11:00 AM, I thought, “This is too early! I’m not hungry. I wish my lunch could be later!” I should have kept my big mouth shut, because I got my wish. After lunch I headed to English class. I got lost along the way and had to retrace, making me what I thought was only a few minutes late. I caught up quickly and paid attention.

     But then the bell rang 15 minutes later. I was so confused… I headed out to the main area, where I ran into the junior class’s counselor, and she helped me understand my wacky schedule. Turns out, that random bell that rang halfway through geometry was the bell signaling for people like me to get to English class! I had missed half of English at the first lunch, and the second half was after the second lunch. Does that make as little sense as it makes to me????

     So after my second lunch (where I finished the lunch I was not hungry enough to eat at 11), I went back to English class and was NOT late this time because I went early and waited outside the right classroom (err, actually I was a few doors too far down).

     The class went on fine, and last period (World Music)  was the most normal part of my day, except for a new favorite quote I have from my teacher. This class is in the band room, which has a huge carpeted area that stains easily. This is a pet peeve of the custodians, due to a long three-year-old Gatorade stain through one side of the room. The teacher told us,” You are not allowed to have any food or drinks in the carpeted area except water, and candy. I like candy. Bring enough to share.”

     The bus ride home was blessedly uneventful.

     So, there you have it- the day I had two lunches. Hopefully it won’t happen again tomorrow, because the B-Day schedule is entirely different (except geometry is in the same period- wish me luck with that halfway bell!).

     Living the events of this day was pretty overwhelming, but looking back, it’s rather funny. I know God goes before me, and He’s writing a story, and it’s going to be beautiful. I’m meeting the real world, one very crazy day at a time. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Stay strong and fearless,

Kristen