Sunday, February 27, 2011

When you smile, those sad eyes look sadder and sadder still

February 27, 2011
On me:
Cardigan: Alloy
T-shirt: Old Navy
Jeans: Dots
Flats: Delia*s
Necklace: Claire's

On the kiddo: no idea!

This outfit was inspired by one of Indiana's. When I saw it I said to myself, "I don't have a leopard print cardigan - but I do have that scary houndstooth sweater and zebra shoes!" Unfortunately my co-worker cut off my feet when she took this photo but you can see those same shoes here.

One of the worst things about being an educator working in programs that specifically serve inner city schools with a large population of "high risk" students is that you can have your heart broken every day. I have met the most wonderful, sweetest kids who have the most awful problems: kids who admit they don't eat all weekend because their parents can't afford to buy food, kids who have to wear uniforms borrowed from the school because they don't have their own clothes, kids afraid to walk home through the neighborhood around their school, kids who tell me about their cousin getting shot in the head, who openly admit to being in gangs, girls who do poorly in school because they have to be "mom" to all their brothers and sisters and little cousins when they get home, girls who are pregnant at twelve and thirteen. Kids who have anger issues, or who are overly touchy-feely, and you have to wonder if it's just a phase or if there really is something deeply sinister going on at home.

All of the typical growing-up problems of trying to find an identity, finishing homework, dealing with bullies and passing tests are exacerbated or even overshadowed by all the other problems that such young people shouldn't even have to deal with. Kids ride their bikes back to the school at 4 PM because they have nowhere else to go that is safe and comforting.

Sometimes they don't have a lot of problems at home, besides their family being poor. But if dad gets laid off or mom can't make the rent, they often have to find somewhere else to stay.

And then they vanish. CPS might scoop them up out of the blue. Or, more likely, they move to a different part of town, to live with a friend or relatives or to go to a "better" school, and you never see them again. You're left with this aching hole in your heart because you loved them so much and you just want to know that they'll be okay.

The little ones just vanish. Their parents don't include them in conversation about moving, they just pack up and leave one day. Older kids usually are told that they are moving, so they can warn me before they disappear. I insisted that this sweet, bright young lady pose with me for a picture last week, because I already knew that by this week, she'd be gone.

I miss her a lot, and I worry. But it just reminds me that I have to do the best I can with the kids I have on a daily basis, because I never know how much time I have to make a positive impact on their lives.

♫: Bat for Lashes - Sad Eyes

Monday, February 21, 2011

Teachers get paid too much!

image from we♥it

Are you sick of high paid teachers? Teachers’ hefty salaries are driving up taxes, and they only work 9 or 10 months a year! It’s time we put things in perspective and pay them for what they do - baby sit! We can get that for less than minimum wage.

That’s right. Let’s give them $3.00 an hour and only the hours they worked; not any of that silly planning time, or any time they spend before or after school. That would be $19.50 a day (7:45 to 3:00 PM with 45 min. off for lunch and plan — that equals 6 1/2 hours).

Each parent should pay $19.50 a day for these teachers to baby-sit their children.

Now how many do they teach in day…maybe 30? So that’s $19.50 x 30 = $585.00 a day. However, remember they only work 180 days a year!!! I am not going to pay them for any vacations.

LET’S SEE…. That’s $585 X 180= $105,300 per year. (Hold on! My calculator needs new batteries).

What about those special education teachers and the ones with Master’s degrees? Well, we could pay them minimum wage ($7.75), and just to be fair, round it off to $8.00 an hour. That would be $8 X 6 1/2 hours X 30 children X 180 days = $280,800 per year.

Wait a minute — there’s something wrong here! There sure is!

The average teacher’s salary (nation wide) is $50,000. $50,000/180 days = $277.77/per day/30 students=$9.25/6.5 hours = $1.42 per hour per student–a very inexpensive baby-sitter and they even EDUCATE your kids!


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

we've got holes in our heart

February 14, 2011
Tee: Paris Blues via Ross
Cardigan: Avenue
Trousers: Dots
Shoes: Keds via Ross
Watch: Target
Necklace: Probably Claire's, old

I wouldn't have posted this outfit, except part of the point of this blog is for me to post pictures for my own benefit and not necessarily to please others. For years I was a serial camera-dodger, so for me to set up a camera and regularly take photos of myself is pretty ground breaking.

All of this stuff is stuff you've seen before. I don't participate in the 30 for 30 because I don't think I own 30 articles of clothing. I know bloggers always talk about being poor, but I am so beyond poor it's not even funny. Like no-gas-in-the-car poor. Usually I can deal with it but it's really getting me down this week.

♫: Lost in the Trees - All Alone in an Empty House

Monday, February 14, 2011

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Snow snow, go away

Yet another snow day! The roads don't seem to bad today, so hopefully schools will be open tomorrow.

I was talking with the librarian at the school where I work (doing an after-school program) and she was telling me about all the budget cuts and teacher layoffs our district has planned. I was really hoping to get a full time teaching position next year, but I'm not feeling confident that it is going to happen.

A few weeks ago I made a "collection" on Polyvore of what I might wear if I were a teacher. I know that a lot of teachers dress really casually, but I think that looking more polished shows how important the job is to you. At the same time I'd want to incorporate my personal style with colorful and patterned tights, fun shoes, weird brooches, and jewelry derived from fossils and animal bones. Okay, so I know it's a touch of goth, but I really have been a little obsessed with animal bones ever since I took a Mammalogy course in college. You can learn so much about an animal from their skeleton!

This set was inspired by someone I saw on a street style blog, but after I made it I realized Hillary actually rocks the shirt dress and houndstooth sweater combo all the time!

The other three sets in my collection follow the jump:

Monday, February 7, 2011

You are a little mystery to me

February 07, 2011
Cardigan & tank: Old Navy
Skirt: Target
Tights: We Love Colors
Oxfords: Urban Outfitters

I believe this will be the swan song for these WLC tights. When I put them on, I discovered they had developed two holes on the right knee. I don't know where the holes came from - maybe from my snaggly fingernails, maybe from getting caught on something. I put some clear polish on the developing runs, trusted this skirt to be long enough to cover the holes, and wore them the rest of the day with no other problems. There was also a hole in the toe and a hole near the crotch, but the one near the crotch has been there (I punched my thumb through accidentally months ago) and has done a really good job of not running.

I'm debating on whether or not to invest in a new pair. On the one hand, they are pretty comfortable, super opaque, and I have worn them a lot. On the other hand, they still have that issue of bagging around the ankles and they're more expensive than my flat broke self can afford.

For now though, I think we'll just have to say adieu, adieu, parting is such sweet sorrow. Whether there's a 'morrow for me and WLC, we'll just have to see.

♫: Amanda Palmer - The Ship Song

Sunday, February 6, 2011

I know it's a fine place to be

February 06, 2010
Cardigan & Top: Old Navy
Jeans: Dots
Shoes: Delia*s

I think this is an under $50 outfit for sure. Every article of clothing is something that I bought on clearance. The sweater was $12 or $14, the shirt I believe was $4, the jeans were $7 and the flats were $10. I wear these shoes all the time, too, it's crazy I've never photographed them before.

This is the first time I've been out of the house for a week. My stepfather came to town with his friend and his son to enjoy the Superbowl atmosphere and see if they could score tickets to the game. I don't like football (I know, I know) so I'm not going to watch with them, but I did go have lunch with them today.

School has been closed since Monday, so I've spent every day in my pajamas. I didn't mind not working at first, because I was sick. Once I started feeling better, sitting inside got real old, real fast.

Did you see that little planet widget I have over on my sidebar now? It's exciting to see the dots pop up when people visit from other parts of the world. Hello international friends! Sorry I'm not that interesting. :P

♫: Veruca Salt - Awesome

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


Sorry I haven't been posting much. I haven't been feeling well and have basically just been wearing this over and over again.

But I did want to tell you that...

teachers have class and style

I was one of the bloggers featured on Teachers have Class and Style at Mix Match Fashion. Go check out all the other stylish teachers!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Etsy Tuesday - Faux Bois Frenzy

'Faux Bois Frenzy!' by vespersparrow

The hot, rustic/retro trend
















Treasury tool is sponsored by

January book list

image from we♥it


1. Clockwork - Philip Pullman
2. Lost Moon: The Perilous Voyage of Apollo 13 - Jim Lovell & Jeffrey Kluger

In progress:

Total for the month: 2

Total for 2011: 2

If you're curious, the Jim Lovell book has been re-titled to simply Apollo 13 after the film came out. It's an excellent read, especially if you're a NASA nerd like I am. Lots of interesting behind the scenes information about the Gemini and Apollo programs.

Been feeling pretty crap so I've spent more time sleeping and less time reading than I'd prefer.
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