Chai And A Chat #53 #ChaiAndAChat

Happy Monday to you all! I hope your week treated you well. Here’s my update!

  • If we were sipping chai together I’d start by telling you I spent another week stepping away from the blog, not challenges, but reading plenty. I am definitely feeling mentally stronger for the time away. It just goes to show, burnout is real!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you we had a wonderful time at school again. My beauts have settled down well, and my special beauts are as special as ever, but with my team back up to full capacity, it was good to operate as a proper team this week. We even went on our first trip out. It wasn’t far, but we walked down to the local library for a special story telling session, and for a chance to show the kids what a library is. You’d be amazed at the amount of kids who have never been there! They were given a chance to explore the children’s area, and the parents who volunteered to walk with us read stories with them, then we had the librarian read the children a story together, before getting back to school ready for lunch. I think the kids enjoyed themselves! And we are also preparing for Harvest festival, which involves each year group in school performing in a whole school assembly. This will be the first time our reception class actually go to assembly, so it will be big for them. And I admit, I managed to add a bhangra twist to our song and dance… let’s see how that works!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d say that I have been relaxing by getting out of school before 5pm, as much as I can, and aside from the usual housework, and my own kids extra curricular activities, I have been reading. I can’t read much in the week, because tiredness means I fall asleep, but at least I read a few pages, then the weekend is a time for surrounding myself with my precious books, and reading away! I was given a gift card for my birthday by a dear friend and I managed to spend it at Waterstones on some new books!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d mention that Lil Princess has been busy with her art again, and produced this beautiful canvas las week. It hink it’s pretty stunning for an eleven-year-old!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d whisper that Hubby Dearest has had a great week at work, and signed a huge deal so we went for a meal to celebrate!
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Bella Italia, Bellini and pizza – perfect! #bellaitalia #bellini

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  • If we were sipping chai together I’d let you know that I had several lovely video calls with my brother and my little nephew, Finndian #2! It’s always such a pleasure to see him growing so much, and he nearly said Bhuaji, or Pooji, as they call me, which means aunty. #heartmeltmoment ❤
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d tell you that next week we have nothing planned again, for which I am grateful. But you know what life is like. Something always comes up!
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d say that I am excited to have Pops and Mum badk in the country too this week. They have had an awesome time on California, visiting Pops’s sister, and many friends they haven’t seen for years! The photos they have been sending are a pleasure to see. They look so happy, and in all honesty, isn’t this what retirement should be?

Right, that’s me done Peeps! Let me how your week has been.

Chai And A Chat #52 #ChaiAndAChat

Happy Monday to you all! I hope your week treated you well. Here’s my update!

  • If we were sipping chai together I’d start by telling you that this week, tiredness killed me. I got up on Monday, and realised that I needed to step back from something. My brain has been frazzled, for some reason, and I couldn’t feel creativity coursing through my veins at all, so I decided that I needed to step badck from my blog a little. That was the only thing I could do. Can’t step back from my job, being a wife and mother, so the blog was the only thing I could sacrifice. By sacrice, I don’t mean totally give up, but just step back, so I haven’t participated in challenges for a whole week so far. That is strange, but I think my mind and body really needs this break from at least one part of my life.
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you that school is still going well. Tiring, yes, but better than I could have expected. We are about to start week five of term, and though there are issues, the children have settled well into class. I have a couple of children with tears at the beginning but they dry up pretty soon after getting into class. I have had two parents come up to me and say that their child is so happy in my class. Brought a tear to my eye! And something lovely happened on Friday. There was a knock at the door and some children from Year 4 were at the door. I was busy reading a story to my class so my TA took something from them and left it on my desk. Once my class had left for the day, I returned to me desk and noticed this plastic tub with my name on it. Inside was a little note about a Bucket of Happiness, and insided were some notes from the children in that class, with positive messages for me, about how they miss being in my class, or enjoyed their time with me, when I taught them… I will post about that more, but reading the notes really made my week! There were more tears waiting to spill, I have to admit!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d admit that I was really dreading Thursday, as I was to teach my first ever PE lesson! How have I got away with not teaching PE? Well, nursery children don’t get formal PE and the reception classes I taught in the past always had their PE the days I wasn’t in class. So, off I went, ready for torture… with my sports clothes on. Recalling the day we tried to get the children changed for a pretend PE lesson had my hackles rising as I thought about it. No matter how much I mentioned it, parents still didn’t have names on all uniforms, so kids didn’t know whose shoes were whose, and the identical tee-shirts cardigans got mixed up, despite me getting them to put their own shoes and clothing on their own chairs… Still, over the week, I had given each child a spot to sit at, on the tables, so they all know where to change, and surprisingly, they all managed pretty well! They didn’t take forever and a day to change, and as I had checked each and every PE bag a few nights before, I knew their kit was all named. As they changed we checked the uniform they were shedding, armed with biros, to hastily add names to unnamed items, so there would be no confusion later. And we managed a half anhour PE lesson! There was warm ups, travelling, catching and throwing anda yoga cool down too! And the kids managed to change back pretty easily too, aside from about 2 kids who are obviously used to mummy doing EVERYTHING for them! I have learned that I can teach a PE lesson, however, I must remember to bring a towel next time, as, even though the exhertion was minimal, I still got really hot!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d say that one day on my TimeHop, something popped up that really hit home, and I had to share it… It was so relevant to me right now…
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you that the rest of the week, I tried to get early nights, reading for a few moments each evening before falling fast asleep. I’m not sure I am recovered yet, but feeling stronger and more positive, definitely.
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d let you know that on Saturday we attended Lil Man’s cricket presentation night where the children get applauded for their efforts in the season. It was a pleasant way to spend an evening, and I got to chat to other cricket mums, and we are bracing ourselves for the nexxt season now!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d say that Sonu Singh has been my little rock this week. He always seems to know when I need a little furry cuddle, and has been my shadow whenever I am sitting down. I do love my little kitty.
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d slap my forehead and say that I cant believe that I forgot to tell you that Pops and Mum have taken an impromptu trip to the US! They are visiting Pops’s elder sister, who has been asking to see him lots recently. She is bedridden. It was a pleasure to see her and video call her, and I was so touched seeing how she leant on her little brother, and his (my Pops) smile of gratitude at being near his sister. I only wish I was with them…
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d let you know I had a totally chilled Sunday again, what with Lil Princess being down with her first cold of the season, and a rainy start to the day. I read, wrote this blog post, and read some more. Here’s hoping that means an energy filled start to the new week!
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d tell you that my unwell colleague will be back at school with me today, and I look forward to a complete team being with us this week, as long as she is all better!
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d say that I honestly have NOTHING planned for this coming week… fingers crossed it will help with my tiredness!

Right, that’s me done Peeps! Let me how your week has been.

Chai And A Chat #51 #ChaiAndAChat

Happy Monday to you all! I hope your week treated you well. Here’s my update!

  • If we were sipping chai together I’d begin my recount by telling you that the exhaustion hasn’t subsided yet. I still try and read every night, but by 9.30pm, my eyes are closing and I just need to sleep!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you that we completed our Early Years Baseline that we have to complete. This gives us an idea of the children’s raw capabilities at the age thgey enter school. It gives us a chance to really tailor learning to the classes we are teaching, ensuring all the children are supported and challenged. My beauts are really beginning to show their colours now… especially my special beauts, the Fidgety Five, for want of another name. They either call out, lash out or have to be sat out! There is the odd run out too, so we have to make sure classroom doors are securely shut, so no one goes walk about! But, all in all, I am pleasantly surprised with my beauts!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d say that the Class Photo we were having taken on Thursday went a lot better than I expected! The children sat as we wanted, and apart from one child, one of my beauts, who really wanted a chair to sit on, rather than the ground, everyone was happy to sit or stand where placed, and there were plenty of ‘Cheese!’ call outs! Just time to wait for the newspaper spread now!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you that, away from school, I am still waiting for a response from the publisher, but I got lovely feedback from the last of my Beta Readers, and it made my heart sing, and the day went so wonderfully for me, after reading it! I can’t wait to get this book out, whether traditionally or independently. I have such positive vibes, I just hope they aren’t me being too sure of myself!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d mention that the curse of injury hit me again… though this time I don’t actually have a clue how it happened. On Wednesday, I started to feen an ache in my wrist, which developed into a sharp pain shooting up my arm. I hadn’t bumped it anywhere. I hadn’t strained it trying to pick up heavy objects. I was flummoxed. Then I remembered that over 25 years ago, I used to suffer from a tendon injury in my wrist, tenosynovytis. It felt like that, I used to find myself with a bandaged wrist a couple of times a year. As a youngster, someone told my parents to have some special Indina blessing done on it… it entailed finding a person with both sets of grandparents still alive, and as they tie a black thread around my wrist, they chant a saying “Jeevey mere Dada Dadi, jeevey mere Nana, Nani, Tootey tera gana gani.” This loosely translates to “May my grandparents have a long life, and may the curse around your injury be broken” (Loosely, honestly!) My cousin’s daughter was called up to help me out here, having all her grandparents around, and can I say that after that, I didn’t have any more pain… until now, over 25 years later! So, I got myself a support, and now I need to find someone to help me out with this special black thread… both my children have their grandparents, but I am not sure if they are able to tie it on me, as my own kids…still researching!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d remind you that I mentioned the hygienist appointment I had… Well, I went, and was cleaned thoroughly, and charged £60 for the pleasure of being told that I know what I am doing, and to continue what I do, and to see her again in 6-8 months, or even a year! £60! So expensive! But my teeth feel extra shiny right now…
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d happily tell you about my night out with half the Tootie Frooties! For those of you not in the know, the Tootie Frooties are a group of good friends I have, locally. We are all mums, and all have similar senses of humour. We try to meet up a couple of times a year, if not more, to just chill out, relax and loosen our mummy collars once in a while. This time we went to a comedy night at the Woodville Halls, which is our local Civic Centre. The comedy was hilarious. Honestly, my jaw was still hurting the next morning, from all the laughter! four extremely funny individuals kept us entertained for longer than we anticipated, then we went off to the restaurant where we had booked to eat dinner 1.5 hours earlier (oops!) And we ate a lovely Turkish meal, before heading home. It war such a fun night, something I needed to do, that I hadn’t had a chance to for a long time. Friends are so important, that we have to make sure we take time out to be with them ❤
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d say that the weekend was extremely calm, with just one set of swimming lessons to go out for. The rest of the time was spent vegging, napping, reading, grocery shopping, eating, watching TV… basically relaxing!
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d tell you that this Friday, Lil Princess will be accompanying me to school as her school has a Staff Development Day. Lil Man doesn’t like being with me in school, but she is really excited at the idea, so she will help out for the day. It is quite handy actually, as we have the children’s first ever individual School Photos too!
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d mention that on Saturday, we have been invited to Lil Man’s end of season cricket awards, and I am looking forward to it, especially since he has had a great season. I hope he gets a little recognition. It will boost him up considerably!

Right, that’s me done Peeps! Let me how your week has been.

Chai And A Chat #50 #ChaiAndAChat

Hi All! Week two of school is done… did you get your drink? Right, let’s get going then!

  • If we were sipping chai together I’d start of by letting you know all about school, since that is what has taken over my life right now. Yes, the teacher exhaustion has totally kicked in. I get to 9pm and I cannot contemplate staying up for much longer. Then I have nights where thoughts about school and planning pop into my mind in the middle of the night, keeping we awake for a couple of hours at a time. That does not help the whole exhaustion thing either!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you that on top of general beginning of the year stuff, we have a whole new timetable and plan to work on, as there have been schoolwide changes that impact the way we were learning. This is always fun to work out (read that as a TOTAL NIGHTMARE) and hasn’t been helped by the fact that one of my lovely assistants, who was unwell at the end of last year, was admitted to hospital again last week. Her health is the most important thing. But it does affect our week in school too, juggling staff and having to rejig plans that won’t work with one less person. Thankfully, most of the team are superstars and we all clubbed together to get through. The rest of the next fortnight will be filled with the same team spirit too.
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d let you know that this week, my beauts stayed in school until 2pm, which meant their first school lunches with us. Well, that was interesting! Children are entitled to free school dinners until they reach 7 over. However, there are some kids who are just not cut out for school dinners. Some kids are still used to being fed, only eat specific food at home, or like everything slathered in tomato ketchup… And they are the ones that push the funny stuff they are presented with, around on their plates, either just not trying, or crying. That’s not fun. Seriously, if your little one isn’t eating at school, give them a packed lunch! At least you know they have some sustenance, and won’t get too upset. As their teachers, we stay with them for the first week of lunches, to allow the lunchtime supervisors to get to know them, with us there as familiar faces. And we get the added bonus of what is known as a duty lunch aka known as a free school dinner. I took the opportunity to try some of the food every day and even though it might not have been like the school dinners I was given as a child (seriously, I’ll never forget Beryl, our dinner lady, and the amazing food we were given!) they were still wholesome, tasty meals! Check some of them out below, and Maureen and her team, our school dinner ladies!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d say that week two of secondary appeared to go well too. I got an email inviting us to a parent consultation meeting with Lil Princess’s form tutor, so we could talk about how she is settling in, and tea, coffee and cake with the Senior leadership team. A lovely touch. Something new by the school. With Lil Man there was a Parent’s Evening in October, standard, where you made appointments to talk about her subject learning. So we will still have this to come, but wonderful to know they care about how the kids are settling in!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you in surprise, that tutoring was actually accepted with positivity on the Tuesday! I was expecting a whole load of complaints, but they came out actually smiling, and did their home work straight away too! (Can’t see this lasting, but I’ll take it while I can!)
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d mention that the weekend arrived and there was crazy busy days, then total relaxation time too! Friday saw me try to be quick at leaving school, but that didn’t happen as there were tweaks to be made to the plans for the following week. Then I had to take Lil Man to a cricket match. His club were playing Lefties vs. Righties! He is a left-handed bowler so was on the Lefties team, and they won! And he got wickets too. Go, Lil Man! But alas, I was unable to watch his match as I had shopping to do, and a house to clean! The next day was another rush around for a while, swimming and then badminton for the kids. Then I crashed and burned. I was shattered! The evening consisted of dozing on the sofa, reading when I woke up. But I did manage to visit the Nail salon, for some new serious, shorter nails, ready for a little typing and writing, because, I may have just signed up for NaNoWriMo… Eeeeek!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you that Sunday was a lovely day for Lil Man. Someone at his cricket club had tickets to The Ashes match at The Kia Oval – England vs. Australia which they couldn’t use so were offering to the first responder. He messaged, and was given the tickets, so Hubby Dearest and Lil Man had a lovely day of bonding watching cricket, and it was beautiful, though maybe a little hot!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d say that Lil Princess and I had a totally vegged out day while the boys were gone. Apart from dropping them to the train station, and popping out to pick up a new doorbell, because ours had disappeared, I bingewatched Workin’ Moms Series 1 on Netflix at the recommendation of my brother! Such a great series! In fact I even started the second series! Lil Princess watched films, talked to her friends and generally did tween stuff… which involves being in her room a lot. At least I convinced her to keep the door open! I think I needed a day of nothingness to prepare me for what might just be a really manic week…
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d tell you that I have a Hygienist appointment on Thursday… erm… not looking forward to that one! I have gums that do not like me, despite me being very careful… and hygienists are important, but OUCH!
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d mention that my class and I have our first ever official class photos too, which appear in the local paper in a First Class photo spread of all the reception classes in the area. This’ll be fun…!
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d excitedly tell you that I am so looking forward to a Friday night out with my Tootie Frootie girls! It’s long overdue, and kind of a belated birthday celebration. We are off to a comedy night, and dinner after. I can’t wait for some grown up socialising!

Right, that’s me done Peeps! Let me how your week has been.

Chai And A Chat #49 #ChaiAndAChat

Hi All! Did you sort your drink out? Good. Let me tell you about my birthday week/first week back to school/Pet-filled weekend.

  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you that the first week was amazing! Seriously. We spent Monday and Tuesday doing home visits, as it is good to see children who are unfamiliar with us in their home environments. It makes them more comfortable to see us at school a couple of days later too. We came back from the visits very positive. There are a few needs that we will have to cater towards, but nothing we can’t handle! In fact our Headteacher said this was the first year she has seen the whole team arrive back from the visits with smiles! It’s all in the mindset, you know. We know there will be hard work ahead, but we are prepared and as ready as we can be! From Wednesday to Friday the children came in for mornings only. I was blessed to have all 30 of my class attend. There are times when, over the summer holidays, for various reasons, minds change, and children end up not coming to us, and then another child will come in their place… Unknown entity… We don’t like unknown entities… they can grow our workload more than we’re prepared for! But, Phew, I don’t have to worry about that now! The children seemed to love the classroom. They explored all areas and I even already have a seating plan in place that they are getting used to! (I’ll take and post pics properly soon!) My class, well, as I have said before, they are a bunch of Beauts! Admittedly I have five or six special Beauts, who may need a little more love and attention due to various needs, and one is an extra special Beaut! And my team. Oh, what would I do without my team? I have one full time assistant and two who do a job share. There may be a third lady who may come in and support our extra special Beaut in the mornings too, one-to-one. The ladies are fantastic, and my teacher partners are the same. I think we gel well as a working group, so I hope this bodes well for a positive year! On Friday, I left with a smile on my face. Not a smile of relief, but one of happiness, that everything, so far seems wonderful.
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#TeamReception @the_positive_teacher_company

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I bought the whole team special Team Reception badges. Gotta love a badge!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d whisper that it was also my birthday on Tuesday… (Did you miss the post?) An early September birthday in the teaching career means that unless it’s the weekend, its likely that I will be working on my special day, and this year was no different. I was spoilt by my friends at work, and got the moast awesome teacher tote bag, which I am proudly using every day now. Home visits were carried out, and I popped out with my close colleague for a coffee (chai latte for me) in the lunch time. Once I got home I was treated to a lovely cake and I was given my present a little earlier… a Macbook Air!!! My family are so thoughtful 💞
I am in love with my new teacher bag and Macbook!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d remind you that it was Lil Princess’s first week at Secondary school! I think we were more worried than she was, to be honest. She has settled in as if she had always been there, and seems to have made some awesome friends too. It is so scary to see her and Lil Man, in their same uniforms, heading off to Big school… and it means I am now officially a Teacher rather than Parent who is a Teacher at my school. That is strange too, not seeing one of my own little beings around the building. I am getting used to not having a clue as to what they are doing until they get home now. Lil Man started back on the Tuesday and yes, it’s like we were never away from that school routine…
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you that I know we are back at school because the teacher exhaustion has kicked in now. By 10 pm, if not earlier, my eyes want to close, and I am drained. It is very tiring, especially at the beginning of the year, as you get used to it all again…
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d let you know that it has been a bit of a pet filled week and weekend too. Obviously we have our gorgeous Sonu Singh, the Punjabi cat, at home and Heer & Ranjha, the parottlets, but during the week, I met Drago, the Bearded Dragon, and Pickles the Tarantula! They were both pets of two of my pupils, who I met at the home visits. I even held Drago too! Then on the weekend, Hubby Dearest’s cousin came to stay with his Blue-eyed Staffy, Alfie, who is 14 years old, or 98 in dog years! He is gorgeous, though thinks he is younger than he actually is, so he always bounds in, plays with everyone then collapses with tiredness! These visits mean that Sonu Singh ends up in our room, so we can keep the two separated… It do feel a little sorry for Sonu though, as he doesn’t know why he’s up in our room, rather than free to roam the house!
Sonu Singh and Alfie
Drago!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you that Sunday was spent, largely, on the sofa, snoozing, reading, reviewing… a perfect relaxing end to the week, to prepare me for week two at school!
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d tell you that I am not looking forward to Tuesday, when the kids start their Maths tuition again. They are already trying to get out of it!
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d say that next week we will be having lunch with our classes, as they increase their hours. This is going to be fun…!
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d mention that I hope, other than these things, I have a pretty calm, quiet week… I think I’m going to need it!

Right, that’s me done Peeps! Let me how your week has been.

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