Friday, September 25, 2015

Teens, Bullying, and Girl Meets World

Girl Meets World tonight focused on the topic of bullying. Bullying is talked about so much these days, that any little slight against a student is labeled "bullying." However, bullying is so much more than children picking on each other, as children tend to do (I'm not condoning this, and I'll come back to it).

Bullying is the use of power over another person; repeated actions that cause another person to feel inferior or weak. In the words of Cory Matthews, "A bully isn't someone who says something you don't like. A bully is someone who uses power and intimidation to hurt others."

My 10 year old and I watched "Girl Meets Rileytown" tonight. She kept asking, "Who is Riley's bully?" and when Riley finally confronted her bully, with the whole school behind her, Little Sis was upset we didn't learn who the bully was.

I explained that Riley's bully didn't have a face because bullies all look different. Each one has their own face, and each person who is bullied needed to be able to see their own bully there, being confronted by Riley.

Sadly, a bully is usually the victim of their own bully, someone who doesn't lift them up, who seeks to belittle them, so they feel they have to do the same to someone else to feel good about themselves. I've seen it many times, from little preschoolers to high schoolers. Honestly, a bully doesn't necessarily need someone to stand up TO them - they need someone to stand up FOR them.

So while we're talking about students who are bullied, let's not forget the ones who are hurting so much that they feel the need to hurt someone else. This behavior is learned. Punishing a bully does nothing but continue to perpetuate the situation. Their victim stands up to them? They'll find someone else until their own hurt is addressed.

Again, I'm not saying bullying is acceptable. I totally agree that we need to stop all forms of bullying. Not only do we need to encourage our children to stand up for the victim, but we need to teach them how to be a friend to those who may not be the most likable person on campus. We need to teach our children to be positive toward everyone, set the example on how friends are supposed to act. It will take time, but it can be done. Behavior modification is hard work, but if everyone is involved, it is well worth the time.

As far as children picking on others, this is where adults need to step up their game. I hear so many parents using "endearing" terms toward their kids that, if said to an adult, would get them punched in the face. Why are we teaching our children that it's ok to call people names by using these words toward them? If we hear children calling other kids ANY name that is not positive or uplifting, we need to give them the vocabulary and have them try it again. They may not KNOW how to "play nice." They may not know HOW to be a friend. WE have to teach them, even at 11, 12, and 13 years old. Trust me, I know. There is no "kids being kids" ... we need to change it to "humans being humans" and set the example for them - even if they're not your children.

So come on, adults! Let's be loving, joyful, peaceful, patient, gentle, kind, and show self-control. Life is going to throw us curve balls, but let's show the kids the right way to handle it! If we're going to make lemonade from those lemons, we're going to need a little sweetener!
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Monday, September 21, 2015

2015 CHOC Walk in the Park!

It's that time of year again!! Time to raise money for Children's Hospital Orange County!

I've been doing this for several years, and I have to say, it's a lot of fun. Last year, I think it was around $2 million raised!

I'm walking again this year, and I'm looking for sponsors! My goal is $100 by the start of the walk on October 11. However, if I reach $65 by Saturday, September 26, I can have my shirt and wristband mailed to me, so I wouldn't have to drive up to Orange County to pick it up.

Can you help? Any amount will help me reach my goal and will help the countless children who go through the doors of CHOC every year. Click the link for a safe and secure way to donate today!

2015 CHOC Walk in the Park

In the meantime, enjoy the pictures from last year!

My walking buddies, Wendy and Amy

Wendy and Amy and me

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Friday, September 11, 2015

Giveaway coming up!!

I took a look at my Instagram today and realized I have 197 followers! 

When I reach 200 followers, I will be hosting a fun giveaway of my favorite craft/journal/planner items! 

Spread the word!

-Jaime @JustAddLaughter

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Passion Planner - Week Three

Another week gone. Second week of work and first week of college done. I cannot express how much my Passion Planner is helping me stay on track with what I have to do and keep track of what I have done. 

Here is my planner at the beginning of the week. I had received an email telling me that my attendance was required at a training Friday, Monday, and Tuesday. With a little clarification on my job title, it was determined that I didn't have to be there. I also dropped my Wednesday night class and moved my Tuesday/Thursday class from 4pm to 6pm. That kind of made me a little uncomfortable, since I had highlighted the entire semester through December.

What was I going to do??

To start with, I covered Wednesday night with the cutest sticker I could find. Pandas are my favorite.

Then, I had to fix Thursday. Not sure how this is going to work, but this week, I did some extra studying, so covering it with green helped. I did the same thing for next week, too. In a few of the following weeks, I just used correction tape. It doesn't look pretty, but I'm sure I'll come up with some other way to make it look less like the train wreck I think it is (it really isn't, but if you know me at all, you know I am kind of a perfectionist).

A note on my study time. I plan it only by time. When I'm done studying, I write in what I did. This will help me keep track of my time and keep my accountable. If I didn't finish an assignment, then I can go back and check what I did instead. If you see on my to-do list on the bottom left page, I have written down what is do in the first part of next week (for my Monday and Tuesday classes). On next week's to-do list, I start with what is due Thursday, then add in Monday and Tuesday for the following week. I had to have it all written down ahead of time, because about mid-semester, I'll forget to look at a syllabus and forget that I had anything due. 

Now, for my pretty girl. She started high school on Wednesday at her dad's house. She called that night and told me how great it was. She ended up in an AVID class and is the only 9th grader who has been in it for three years. I guess they don't offer it in middle school up there.

She seems to be having a good time. I can't believe she's already in high school. Wasn't she just starting kindergarten?

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Saturday, August 15, 2015

Week Two with Passion Planner - Back to School Update!

This week marked my second with the Passion Planner, and my first of the new school year. Little Sis started 6th grade and we both cried a little bit on our way there because Big Sis was missing out on the milestone (and we will be missing out on hers when she starts high school next Wednesday).

Let's start with the obligatory "First-Day-Of-School" picture.

This week in my Passion Planner isn't as cute and fun as last week. Basically, it's because I didn't have as much fun! I went back to work last week on Thursday, but Monday was the first day back with my regular schedule. Here's the fun part: Little Sis starts at 7:47 with a Zero-Period. I don't start until 9:25, so what do I do in that extra hour and almost 45 minutes? Well, this week, I worked! I can't seem to stay away from my awesome coworkers, and I enjoy doing the tech-stuff like typing up student schedules into a spreadsheet for easy sorting to see where they are. You can see where I wrote in the extra time I spent at work. I am keeping track not to seek compensation, but to keep track of my own time. In the afternoons, I am off at 2:55, but school doesn't get out until 3:32. By then, I would have to fight after-school traffic, so I wait until about 3:45 or 4:00 to leave. It's been really hot this week, so I don't want to sit in my car with the A/C on while waiting to exit the parking lot.

I really do like that my Post-Its fit in the bottom section. I didn't want to write those lists directly into the notes section for two reasons: one, I might have wanted to do some drawing or doodling in that section; and two, I had planned to move the list to next week and just repeat the menus. (Because it's so messy looking, I won't be doing that!) I think it's funny that I made Buffalo Chicken that night, because according to TimeHop, I made it exactly two years previously on the first day of school in 2013. You can see that post (and recipe) here. It's still a hit -- there were not enough for both leftovers for my lunch AND seconds. 

My weekends aren't generally planned with a schedule, but my to-do lists can get pretty long. I like that I can write them in on those sections. I saw this on Passion Planner's Instagram as part of their Planner Crush Wednesdays. They have some great ideas that can be used with any planner, but work especially well with the Passion Planner.

Next week starts my college courses. I am taking three classes over four nights. I've already printed up the two available syllabuses, as well as other important information I may need. I have planned to keep a separate planner specifically for my college classes, since I'll be able to put more information, but I'm trying to figure out how I can use my Passion Planner. I think small square Post-Its might be the answer. I also bought some cute stickers and washi tape today. I will definitely update next week!

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Friday, August 7, 2015

Week One with Passion Planner

I received my brand new, academic-year Passion Planner on July 31. I was so excited! I usually use a calendar year planner, but since I work for a school district and am going back to college, I figured an academic planner would be a better fit.

I started by labeling the months. It just worked out that first semester (for both work and college) is red, second semester is yellow, and summer (June and July) is blue. I went through and added in the college's dates and deadlines as well as my work's (and Little Sis' school's) schedule. 

Most of the time, I use the black Signo Gel pen or the PaperMate pencil.

Here's the end of July. I added in the events from my previous planner. I scheduled in time for events, but at the end of each day, I went in and added events that happened that day. My planner is also color-coded: 

General appointments - yellow
Work - orange
School (College) - pink
Study Time - green
Personal - red
Little Sis - blue
Budget/Finances - light green

I saw this quote on Instagram from Toby Mac. It was a perfect fit for the Passion Planner!

Here is this week. Yeah, I just said I'm not big on drawing. These don't count. I looked at pictures while I drew them. I really love the layout of the Passion Planner. I didn't have a whole lot of things planned this week, except work on Thursday and Friday (when we officially went back to work for the school year). But when we did some spontaneous stuff, I added them in so I could remember them. Wednesday was a throw-away day. I stayed home and did nothing but watch TV.

Since Saturday is a day with nothing planned, I made my to-do list in Bullet Journal style. I just realized that I've already planned my lunches for next week (decided what dinners to make and I'll just take left overs for the first few days). I need to do some major grocery shopping, though.

You may have noticed that when I mentioned my color-coding, I failed to mention Big Sis. The big news on that is that she actually went to go live with her dad over the summer. It's still a sore spot with me. In fact, I'm tearing up just writing about this. But I had to let her go. If I had resisted and refused, things would have been bad here. I'm hoping she'll come to her senses at some point and come home. She seems to be happy. She'll start high school (don't even get me started on the fact that I'm missing her FIRST DAY OF HIGH SCHOOL!!) on August 19. I really hope she'll send me pictures. 

What kind of planner do you use? How do you handle your to-do and shopping lists?


Saturday, June 13, 2015

I'm a Finalist! Help me win!

Tropicana Laughlin is running a contest to win a 2-night stay at their amazing hotel with a cabana for a day! My picture is a finalist!

If you wonderful readers could go to both Instagram and Facebook to vote for my picture, I would be greatly appreciated. I will even write a blog about my amazing trip!!

Facebook (make sure you click "like" on the actual picture, and not just the post): 

Instagram (this link should go directly to the picture. Be sure to follow Tropicana for some great giveaways to come this summer):

Thank you!!
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