kate5kiwis: July 2009


“If you were all alone in the universe with no one to talk to, no one with which to share the beauty of the stars, to laugh with, to touch, what would be your purpose in life? It is other life, it is love, which gives your life meaning. This is harmony. We must discover the joy of each other, the joy of challenge, the joy of growth.” — Mitsugi Saotome

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

ramble on

i have this thing about wearing jeans pretty much every day - even in the classroom.
they're comfortable, i can crawl on the floor with the kids, and i am not constantly twitching my clothes back into place.
but today i wore a skirt to uni (cos i did a presentation, and tried the time-honoured trick of dressing up to give me an exterior of professionalism) and guess what? three of the *cool kids* (yeah, there are cliques in uni classes - believe it) zipped past and exclaimed what a cool and funky skirt i had on. of course i couldn't resist telling them i'd made it out of an old sheet. lol.

and the other studenty news is that i've already done 15% of assignments for curriculum integration (aka unschooling in the classroom - amazing paper, i'm loving every second) and tomorrow and froiday (i'm procrastinating) i am doing my assessment assignment - worth 35% (that word still gives me the oookies. actually, both A words do) and then i am going to start my multiliteracies assignment (35%).
right now, i'm preparing a teacher interview for wednesday (worth 20% - oh how unfriendly percentages look in this context).
and pouring a second glass of wine.
maybe it'd be more profitable to become a viticulturalist...?

Monday, July 27, 2009

How To Get A Free Ride In A Police Car

1. After Debating Society meeting, have a few quiet ones with a couple of mates.

2. Get on the bus: late, late at night.

3. Unwittingly fall asleep on the way home.

4. Stay asleep as the bus passes your usual stop and finally wake up at the end of the route: far, far from home.

5. Stumble out, disoriented, and wonder which direction is home.

6. Walk aimlessly along the street.

7. Notice a car pulling into a driveway and stealthily walk down after it, in the hope of asking for directions.

8. Realise that the driver has locked his car doors and is currently on the phone to the cops cos he thinks he's about to be mugged by a nearly-twenty-year-old wearing a dark hoodie.

9. Sprint back up the driveway and activate your homing beacon.

10. Get picked up by Mister Plod three streets away with an "Excuse me, have you been wandering down people's driveways?", explain the situation, and get driven to your doorstep.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

aujourd'hui à la plage

this weekend, surprisingly, it seems that we've skipped spring and gone straight to summer. there is something so calming about big, wide, open spaces. a starfish was dug, and decorated.
mais... une problème: it looks like i'm gonna have to plant this summer's herbs with my baby spade cos we mistakenly left our big hefty spade at the beach.

Friday, July 24, 2009

merlin's not a w-i-z-a-r-d!!!!!

we've had to wait nearly a whole week for these pics, cos i forgot to take the camera and have had to nick them from various *randoms* (minus the apostrophe) facebooks - so - uncaptioned photo overload, here we go -

this is punk barbie,
not teacher barbie:

what a blast!!!!! loved every second - can remember every other second - voting for the annual bash for sure X

Monday, July 20, 2009

immense clevertude

(oh how i love that expression)
lol – i wasn't going to announce this here – but hey, this blog is my journal, no matter how public and i'm big on celebrating success.

so here goes: i’ve just got my final grades for my first three papers:

2009: Bachelor of Teaching (BTCHG)
Art Education Through Printmaking and Painting:
Social Issues in Aotearoa/New Zealand Education:

*ahem* the third paper was entitled Teachers as Professionals, and was not quite an A – ’nuff said!

back to the A+ supercoolness then: i’m really chuffed, and nearly convinced it’s been worth it, but i’m struggling with the temporary loss of touch with my peeps. i need some gentle suggestions as to how to remain in my kids’ worlds whilst also negotiating this full-timeness, cos there’s only so much midnight oil available and way less hours for connection. i did have the brainwave of every-night-tuck-in-to-bed.....

*whispers to self* twelve weeks to go, twelve weeks to go... X

Friday, July 17, 2009

sunshine mugs

the other day i found these little mugs at the op shop for fifty cents each, and immediately fell in love with them - they were originally made in nelson, where some of our family tree make their home, and they have a lovely potter's stamp on the bottom. i cannot believe that people threw these tiny cuties away - they look perfect for a fairy party of dandelion tea and homemade raspberry jam scones.

in the absence of either, i decided on Katie's Roasted Winter Veggie Soup. so last night, while making dinner, Danny and i chopped up extra vege and placed it all on a baking tray:
two onions, peeled and quartered
half a large pumpkin, peeled and chopped into eight pieces
six carrots, topped and tailed (but not peeled!)
two parsnips (same)
a lovely swoosh of deliciously green extra virgin olive oil from hawkes bay drizzled over all the veggies - mmmmm.
followed by a good grinding of salt/kaffir lime leaves/sundried tomatoes (Bulldog keeps bringing this sorta stuff home when he goes shopping)
roast it for about an hour and then leave it all in the oven to nearly cool (while ya eat dinner accompanied by the usual family hilarity)

i have a thing for leeks in soup. here's the trick. chop into warming olive oil, get it started, cook for a few mins, then tuck it all under a lid, turn off the heat and walk off and leave it to cook itself for ten minutes! (perfect when procrastinating writing an essay!)

now: find a few extra roasted poh-tay-tohs that weren't eaten at dinner and chuck the lot into the pressure cooker, add water, let it squeal, cook ten minutes. leave overnight without touching it to let the flavours develop (or cook in the usual huge stockpot until tender, then pop the lid on).

just before lunchtime the next day, inbetween essay takes, whizz it with the magic wand, adding extra water (unless you prefer baby food consistency, which i do).

pour into delectable, mouthful-sized mugs...

be delighted when resident daughter says... "oh, my gosh, this is amazing! did you use poh-tay-tohs? i think that makes all the difference."

(the best thing is, there's a perfect excuse for a refill - there are only two sips in each mug!)

ohk, back to the essay now X

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

confessions (of a middle aged drama queen)

well, my admission is that during the first two weeks of last semester, in the middle of the night, i had an hysterical meltdown, and insisted between sobs to Bulldog that i could pull out of my studies and still get my money back. cos i was thinking that it is a huge waste of money to do a course and then fail miserably. but as the weeks progressed and i slid further down inside the rabbit hole, i found myself so glad that i'd started this year, reeducating katie.

funnily enough, i really really enjoyed two of my papers, and came out of my third with my nostrils above water and breathing freely. finally, a wonderful holiday month arrived - yay - i've nearly finished making my hippie quilt, i've read two books recommended to me by woozie, made loads of food to keep troops' tummies happy, reconnected with the worlds of blogland and facebook (and real life), had oooks of convos with danny, and lovely long snuggles with my babies, and i've even had the swine flu for the last week and a half.

and now it's groundhog day. back to the beginning. i find myself hyperventilating in the middle of lectures, as huge books of readings are dispersed, big fat words are bandied about, concepts which everyone else seems au fait with and i have had to come home with the videos (yep, videos) to catch up... and the world of relief teaching in 2010 is hugely appealing when compared to an interview interrogating my philosophies of education, literacy, numeracy, assessment, curriculum integration... it all seems so hard again... how on earth am i gonna relearn the "teaching" part of teaching when i've just let kids "be" for so many years? now i'm thinking i did my own kiddos a disservice by not "doing" literacy with them, cos we just focussed on "being" literate.....

i need a little perspective. or a slap. ('cept i don't believe in slaps.)

the good news is that i think i have nearly made peace with my butterfly lecturer. she is hilariously just like me. it turns out that she loves doing art with children, and so we did art in her curriculum & assessment lecture today - we drew the back view of the person in front of us - and i found myself instantly absorbed and completely forgetting the success criteria we'd just been given. and that's completely okay, she says, that's to be expected when you get an able student or someone who feels confident in their ability.
which was a far cry from my first art lesson, just last semester. and a far cry from her butterfly comment in my last paper with her. maybe there's hope for katie?

there are twelve weeks left of this semester, and a ton of work to be produced in that time. i wonder if the rabbit hole is big enough? and if the slippery slide will just shoot me off the bottom? perhaps it's just that overwhelmed first-two-weeks-feeling. i hope so. cos i don't fancy the impending hysterics.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009


the morning after: Dr Mal Practice, Lucy Lady, Justin Time, and the lawyers... in the lounge, with the singstar...

Monday, July 06, 2009


the house was filled with whodunnit wannabes this evening for woozie's belated birthday. yeah, Bulldog had written a How To Host A Murder game and the suspects reconvened at our place to discover who murdered "Mayor Mortal" (bah dah BOOM!)...
was it:
Ewen Busturde, the illegitimate son of the mayor?

Anne Bagg, the mayor's personal assistante?

Lucy Lady, the mayor's bit on the side?
Justin Thyme, his ex-business partner?

Ginny Tonnick, the alcoholic sister?

Morty Mortal, the mayor's twin brother?
or Dr Mal Practice, who has his eye on the mayor's wife?

(or one of the others whose photos i need to recover lol?)
at the end of the evening of hilarity and frivolity and a couple of games of mafia thrown in for good measure... all was revealed...

but i cannot say whodunnit,
or i'll have to shoot myself.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

trash to fashion

a friend invited me
to "teach some art"

with his class this week,
the last week of
the school term.

the kids have been
studying the 1950s,
and had recently done
a unit on recycling.
we spent three days
recyclable materials
into wearable art,
chatting with fleur in cambodia,
and generally having a ball.
it was totally fabulous.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

which Harry Potter character are you?

nope, this is *not* another silly facebook quiz. i'm actually h'officially on holiday this month, but i've skived off to a friend's classroom for three days this week - i'm swanning about with a great bunch of ten/eleven year olds doing TRASH TO FASHION - vewy exciting pics to follow. but first, a little funny moment:

one of the lads, during a breather from making stuff, popped over and asked me if i had acted in a Harry Potter movie. like, who? i grinned... Professor McGonagall? ummmm, yes, he insisted, have you? i nearly fell into my pile of rubbish, but LOOKIT...
*ahem* there does seem to be a FAINT resemblance:

watch it, kid. talk that way to me again and i'll turn ya into a frog.