Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Getting into the holiday spirit

Getting a ride to cut down the tree!
I have to confess that this year I'm finding it very difficult to get into the holiday spirit. I can't help but wonder if it's because since Halloween I've been saying "no no no no no!" to Christmas things and I can't get out of that mindset. But ever since last Thursday, when my band played Sleigh Ride for the first time, I've been starting to feel more and more in the holiday spirit.

This weekend was full of holiday joy. Saturday J and I took the high school youth group from our church to Amish country to cut down a tree for the sanctuary. Afterwards we roasted hot dogs and made s'mores by the fire at the tree farm and drank hot cocoa.

Sunday was my band's holiday concert. It was a more-than-sold-out crowd! Amazing :) One of my students came with her daughter and granddaughter. It was so sweet and really meant a lot to me. And she said they all enjoyed the concert.

This is the one!

I've got a festive manicure with a cute accent nail (special shoutout to Julie, my Jamberry consultant!) and finally got to do some holiday crafting this weekend.   I'm sending four headbands to my favorite little Erin as soon as I can get to the post office.

I make them in grown-up sizes, too :)
I'll eventually be selling my headbands at my etsy store once I make enough to keep an inventory, but if anyone wants to buy one in the meantime - just let me know! They are non-slip and I've tested them running and at intense yoga classes :) If there's a particular design you have in mind, I'm happy to do a custom order!

This semester is rapidly coming to an end and I'm seriously drowning in standardized tests and paperwork. But we are also having a lot of fun in class this week.  In my multi-level classes we are talking about different ways to describe people (particularly appearance.) The workbook had them reading short personal ads, so I had them write their own. I told them it could be about them or they could make up a person.  The results were quite funny!  
Love all of the random topics that come up in my beginner class!

All the supplies for our holiday party fit nearly in my Thirty-One Utility tote :)
As part of our holiday party in my evening class tonight, I took a crazy chance and read them How the Grinch Stole Christmas. It's definitely a part of American Christmas culture and since it's part of my job to not only teach language, but culture, I decided to give it a shot.  I am happy to say that it went very well and my students loved the story and the message. While it wouldn't work in a low level class, it was a really fun thing to do.  We also talked about Hanukkah in class. While many of them have had other ESOL classes where they learned about Christmas, none of them had ever studied Hanukkah before and they were very interested in learning about it.

A small sampling of the goodies! Recipes from Hungary, China, Bangladesh and Russia. 
We've also been having holiday potlucks in my classes for the last day of the term. I love, love, love these parties and seeing what my students bring in! All sorts of amazing and interesting food from around the world.  And, man, can some of my students cook!

See that on the near end there? That's one of my favorite holiday recipes. A Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bar knockoff recipe. It's pretty amazing. Stay tuned to this blog for the recipe in my next post! :)


  1. I love every part of this post! (except the ~not in the holiday spirit~ part). It all sounds SO fun! Sleigh rides and music, S'mores and friends. What a wonderful way to get into the holiday spirit. Love it.

    1. Thanks, Tess! :) I really appreciate the comments!