Sunday, April 18, 2010

My life before kids!

I love hearing about my friends who are currently stay at home mom’s and what they did before they became mommies. Sometimes I am surprised at what they did. Not in a bad way, it is just that I see what they are doing now and have a hard time imagining them doing that other job. I feel truly blessed that I have been able to stay at home with my kids. I know that the Lord will provide what we need if we just trust in him. Without two incomes we might not be able to have the house that we want or put our kids in the clothes that everyone else’s kids are wearing, or drive fancy cars, but Sean and I feel that it was best for our family if I stay at home with our kids. Anyways, what did I do before I was a mommy? Here is my story….in 2001 I graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a degree in Marketing and Basic Business Education and continued on to get my masters in technology education. This enabled me to teach high school Marketing and other business classes. I had always wanted to be a teacher growing up. I had a little classroom in our basement and I would pretend to teach whatever grade that I was in at the time. Ok it stopped during middle school- high school, but I just had fun teaching my pretend students. In high school I took several business classes including Marketing. As a student in Marketing we were able to be part of a student organization called DECA. I was involved with marketing type competitions within DECA. I did pretty well during my junior year and during my senior year, I wrote a 30-page Marketing research paper on Office Depot with two partners. With our paper we won 1st place at the state level competition and got top 10 in the national competition. I guess this was my final push to what I wanted to be when I grew up—a Marketing teacher. I had wonderful role-models in the Marketing program at my high school. They allowed me to volunteer and chaperone on trips through out college to help me stay connected. When I graduated I was offered a job at my alma-mater- Millard South High school. I got to teach alongside my two role-models from high school. What a treat to learn from the pros in DECA. I taught several classes including Fashion Marketing, Marketing 1 & 2, International Business, Keyboarding (yuck), and our Marketing Internship. I also helped with our school store. After my first two years my former teacher retired after an awesome 32 year teaching career. I guess he felt comfortable leaving me in charge. It was a huge task to take on a national recognized program and one of the best in the state and nation. I was now in charge of running our Marketing 2 program where my students worked on research projects, business plans, and advertising campaigns. Some were 10 page projects, but most were 30-40 page projects. Talk about a lot of editing, reading, and organization on my part. We did pretty well my first year alone. I had 20-some students qualify for Nationals and had a student place 1st in the nation and then my 2nd year alone I had a team place 2nd place. During my 3rd year of teaching I met Sean. I knew right away that he was the one that I was going to marry. We got married the weekend after my school year ended. The next school year I was pregnant with Jocelyn and was due the following August—what would have been the start of a new school year. We decided that it was best that I take a year off to spend time with her. I traveled a lot with my job and couldn’t imagine having to find someone care for her while I was gone for sometimes 5-6 days a time. I know other teachers did it all the time, we just couldn’t imagine doing that. I clung on to my former job that entire first year at home. I helped with the Marketing 2 projects—reading, editing, and helping brainstorm ideas. I was up there when asked to help. I also substitute taught. I held on. After Jocelyn was 6 months, Sean felt it was time to take a new job over an hour and half from Omaha. This led to our move to Pleasant Dale and hour away from my job. The thought of commuting an hour and leaving Jocelyn was too overwhelming. We prayed about it and were given peace with our decision to have me stay at home. Going into the principal’s office to tell him that I was resigning was an extremely hard thing for me to do. I felt I was letting my former Marketing teacher and co-worker down. I felt I was letting my co-workers down. It is hard because I still really want to help out, but it has been kind of hard to drop everything with the kids and find childcare to help out. I think about my former students and my former job all the time. I think about what I would do differently if I was teaching a certain lesson and I still think of fun ideas for Marketing projects. I don’t think I will ever go back to teaching in a public school—I guess I am lucky, I get to teach my little ones—and hopefully one day teach them about the world of Marketing!
Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.

Below are a few pictures from what I could find from my teaching days. I left most of them behind at school when I left. Below-- Sarah and I-- one of my students and then my last group of senior officers.

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