Thursday, March 26, 2015


I often complain about the system, the parents, and especially the punk teens.  What I probably don't express enough is how much I absolutely love where I work.  I absolutely love the people I get to associate with every day, get to call colleagues, but most important consider friends.

To be honest, I hated it at first, absolutely hated it.  I would hide in my dungeon of a class room and cry a lot, I hated it so much.  I missed my old school, missed my older, mature students, but most important I missed my friends.  I've often spoken of those friends, those kindred spirits that helped start Paradigm High School with me.  I will always be forever grateful for them.  They will always be special, different, irreplaceable in my life.

But with years.... lots of time.... I have come to love the people I work with so unbelievably much.  Normally I would think about how much I enjoy walking into the teachers lounge, shooting the breeze with my comrades fighting the same battles as I am, but the other day an unusual thing happened.  I'm sure she was high as a kite on Valum, but we absolutely love her for it.  A teacher did the unspoken thing.  She brought up how much she loved us and how grateful she was for us.  She had taught at a high school for 20 years but decided to switch down to our school. I loved and still love hearing her talk about how much more difficult what we do is.  My current teaching situation is hands down one of the most difficult teaching jobs possible especially in Utah Valley. I truly believe that.

But she told all of us how without us she wouldn't have made it, without us she would have quit.  She talked about how grateful she was for us.

It's like there is an unspoken rule to not talk about it.  How much we like each other.  How much we look forward to seeing each other every day.  How fun it is for at least 23 minutes every day to associate with real live adults.

I received the most wonderful compliment the other day.  A veteran teacher, a guy that is very highly respect at the school, district, and state level, or so he tells us, for his teaching ability.... A guy that really is a master teacher.  As we were talking about problems in the system or in the school he said, "Kristin it is really too bad that more people like you aren't actually administrators.  I mean don't get me wrong, I am thrilled you are in the classroom.  The students are lucky to have you.  But you would be a fantastic administrator. And they are idiots if they don't see that."

I could die happy.

I digressed. Shocking. Point is. Every day in this battle I fight, I am so grateful for the men and women that fight with me. The friends I've made and the strong loyal relationships we have.... I will forever be grateful for that. Because very few people truly understand what this fight is like. What it takes. Who we are fighting. And I would go to bat for these people every chance I can. And I am so lucky to feel that.  To feel like I am working with people who are just as dedicated as I am in trying to improve the future of America, but most important the future of every single kid.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Feliz CumpleaƱos... Mexican Edition

So my little brother Craig is in his 3rd year of med school with very little vacation time, his wife Marcie is having a baby soon so we figured we needed to get in one more trip before then.  So when they invited us to head to Rocky Point, Mexico with them, we jumped on it.  I had never been and honestly I had no idea how wonderful it would be.  

So Wednesday night we flew out of Provo down to Mesa.  We had fun talking that night.  Then I went for the most glorious run Thursday morning around beautiful Phoenix.  It was unreal.  A warm breezy rainy morning.  Seriously I need to stop visiting Arizona in the spring because it really makes me think I'd like to live there!  The best part........ the smell of orange blossoms mixed with desert rain.  Like I said, unreal.

We got in the Prius loaded up and headed on our way south to Mexico!  The drive was so beautiful I almost couldn't believe it!  The desert was super green, purple, yellow, and orange wildflowers growing everywhere.  I kept trying to take pictures but it didn't really work out.  The only driving picture is this happy trailer.

When we were driving down the row of resorts it really wasn't very impressive.  Sand dunes and desert on one side then buildings on the other...  We couldn't see any type of beach.... until we got into our resort condo and saw this.........

The view from our room was killer.  We had an awesome balcony that we would sit and watch the view for hours.  After dropping off our stuff we decided to go to town and check out the Fish Market.
After a little wondering we ended up in a restaurant eating with a beautiful ocean view.

After we headed back to the resort to venture out to look at the tide pools, watch the sunset, then hang out in the hot tub with the other Mormons.

The next morning I got up and ran on the beach then workout in the gym.  Certainly couldn't complain of this view from the gym.  
Then we headed out for a day of relaxing on the beach and pool.

I felt like there was the perfect amount of Mexican vendors walking around offering things.... like tamales bought by Craig, sunglasses bought by Jason, and fresh pineapple pina coladas... bought by me.
My friend Marie's family has been going to Rocky Point for years so she gave me the best recommendation ever.  You see, Craig served in Northern Mexico.  And probably not so shocking, he was the most scared out of all of us to make this venture back so near to his mission.  He was really nervous until we finally made it to Lucas.  The most delicious authentic Pollo Loco imaginable.  It made Craig unbelievably happy and was not nervous about our trip the rest of the time!  Craig loved the chicken most, Jason loved the rice most, and I was in love with the beans.  Which is completely weird because I've never eaten beans before in my life.  It was so so so delicious.

Then later that night we went out for fried ice cream....
The rest of the night was spent playing Ticket to Ride and watching movies.

The next morning it was fun to watch the sun rise over the beautiful view.  Even Jason woke up for it.
After my run we decided to hit up town one more time for Jason to get more sunglasses and our traditional traveling magnet.  Then we had some delicious street tacos with our bottled soda.  

And Thrifty's Ice Cream.

Then another day on the glorious beach.

We titled this "Third Wheel"  I love it. :)

After Lucas one more time we watched the warm beautiful sun set as we drove back to Arizona.
I was so impressed with the border guards.  They were super nice and cool and friendly.  It was a wonderful experience all the way around.

And of course it wouldn't have been possible with our these two.  I sure love them.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015


I thought it'd be fun to get pictures from all 32 of my birthdays.  I really need to scan in all my pictures... but until then a picture of a picture will have to do.  It's been a great 32 years.
Blessing Day



















Missing here.... 22nd Birthday picture of me and Jake blowing out our 
candles on his first birthday! Can't find it anywhere!!!!








30... sadly not a single picture of me.  Might have to do with the
fact it was a week after our wedding and we were pictured out.


And here's to 32!