Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Gone Baby Gone...

Matt here. A picture of Cone Head. he just had his manhood limited.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Christmas Card Photo Attempt #1

It used to be hard enough just to find a good picture of me and Matt together. Now we've added Zeke into the mix and it's become even more difficult. He is a little ball of squirming, jumping energy. Here is attempt #1 - please notice poor little Zeke and how tightly Matt is holding the leash. I think he's blinking from the flash.

Attempt #2 - a pretty good picture except for Zeke's glowing, "robot dog" eyes.
Too bad I don't have very good photoshop skills...

It looks like we'll just have to try again. Hopefully next time we'll get it right!

Friday, December 4, 2009

New Job!

Going in to my second year of subbing, I knew that teaching jobs in this area are few and far between. I figured I would be lucky to stay busy with a job every day and even luckier if I was able to get another long-term job like the one I had last year.

You can imagine how disappointed I was when about a month ago I got an email from the district explaining that the application pool for long-term positions was closed to substitutes. The more I thought about it, the harder it was to accept. It didn't seem fair that the district would deny me the chance to even apply for the same type of position I had last year. So, I decided to go out on a limb and email the HR director. I'm not generally the boldest person when it comes to these type of things, but I knew if I didn't ask him to give me a chance to apply, I would feel horrible about the missed opportunity all year. To my surprise, I got an email back from his assistant, letting me know that she had put me in the application pool and that it never hurts to ask! I am SO glad I went out of my comfort zone.

I was now in the application pool, but heard nothing about any open positions for a few weeks. Then, out of the blue, I was called for an interview! It was at a school in the Mukilteo District that I had never subbed at and knew no one. I practiced my interview questions and prayed all day yesterday before going in to the interview. I hoped that through my nervousness they would see that I'm a good teacher who would take care of the class during their teacher's maternity leave. The principal told me they would make their decision and let me know by early next week. Now the hard part was over... I had done everything I could and just had to wait.

Well, I didn't have to wait very long! The principal called me last night to tell me that it was an easy decision - they chose me for the job! It was all I could do to keep it together and stay calm and professional on the phone. As soon as I hung up, I was jumping and smiling and hugging Matt! I will be teaching first grade at Odyssey Elementary (go Orcas!) starting after winter break and going through the beginning of May. I couldn't be happier. It will be like having my "own" classroom for a few months - with my favorite grade!

Yay! Yay! Yay!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Here I am...

I know many of the followers of Newsome News have wondered - where is Matt Newsome? His lovely wife, Erin, is always posting and updating the masses on what's new with the Newsome family. I figured it was time for me to break my silence.

Things have been busy for us lately, as you can tell. New house, dog, and job. We are having a great time with all three. The house is a challenge at times, but I'm willing to learn and do whatever needs to be done. So far Erin's dad Rick and I have revented the dryer, sanded and repainted the kitchen cabinets, replaced the kitchen and family room dry wall and installed new lighting. The list goes on.

Ezekiel Newsome, or Zeke is giving us a run for our money. To date, we've lost: 1 MacBook power supply and two iPhone chargers. All three have been plugged in while Zeke attempted to consume them. I guess he likes the taste of electricity?

My job has been great. I just finished my training. I started in February at the Academy and just finished my Field Training with Seattle last week. I am now working at the West Precinct, 3rd watch. My area includes Belltown and Pike Place Market. So far, so good. I really enjoy it.

I'll figure out how post some pictures and videos soon.

Meow!

Apple Cup


What a great game! Yesterday Matt and I went to the Apple Cup to watch the Huskies completely shut out the Cougars, 30-0. It was the last home game that we had tickets for. I love my Huskies - there is nothing better than watching them win! GO DAWGS!



Saturday, November 28, 2009

Thankful

I love Thanksgiving. It is such a warm, cozy holiday. This year Matt and I spent the afternoon at my mom and dad's house with the Walton side of the family. We had a smaller group than usual - only 12 people. This meant that for the first time I can remember, I actually got to sit at the "grown up table." This is a very big deal. For years and years, I have always sat at the "kid's table." Even though all of my cousins can be considered adults now, we have such a big group that we usually end up at 2 tables. It was fun to sit at one big table and enjoy our delicious turkey day feast. I was SO thankful to have Matt sitting next to me, as only a week earlier, we weren't sure of his work schedule.

He is now finished with his training and is no longer riding with his field training officer. Matt's assignment is 3rd watch - 7:30 pm - 4:30 am in the West Precinct. This came as a surprise to Matt since he had not listed this precinct on his placement request form. Nevertheless, he has jumped right in and likes it so far. His area includes downtown - from Westlake Center, through Belltown and down to the waterfront (here is a map - Matt's area is the "M" section.) It's a busy area that time of night for sure. Hopefully soon I'll have Matt update our blog with some stories of a typical night in his new precinct.

Although nights can be hard with Matt not coming home until 5 am or so, it is wonderful to have his afternoons free. He had to work on Thanksgiving, but we were still able to spend the whole afternoon together and eat dinner before his shift started. I have to say that is definitely something I can be thankful for.

We brought Zeke to Thanksgiving at my parent's house and I was so proud of him. He did a great job with all the people around. I love his sweet, friendly nature. He just wants to be everyone's best friend. He loved playing with Sonny Boy, my Aunt Lisa's pomeranian. He also loved his first taste of turkey and showing off his new holiday collar.


My baby dog doesn't look very much like a puppy anymore. I can't believe he's almost 5 months old!

Another Thanksgiving highlight for me was playing Mexican Train. Somehow this has become a holiday tradition and I just love it. Matt has yet to get on board, but someday he will realize how fun it is.


I was in charge of pies this Thanksgiving, which is definitely my favorite job. I can't think of anything more fun on Thanksgiving morning than making pumpkin pie and watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. This year I made 2 pumpkin pies. Matt and I also bought a pie from his basketball team for their fall fundraiser (we have to support the Lady Knights any way we can!) I had low expectations for the store bought pies, but I was wrong... they came from the fabulous Karl's Bakery in Everett and they were amazing. They almost outshone my homemade pumpkin pies, but not quite! Somehow we ended up with an extra pie from the fundraiser, which brought us to 4 pies total: my 2 pumpkin, plus a cherry and lemon meringue. Holy moly that's a lot of pie!

The wonderful weekend has continued with a visit to Gig Harbor and a second Thanksgiving feast with the Clegg family. I had such a great day with Karen in the Harbor - we did a little shopping, had lunch and peppermint cocoa, and got some ornaments as a special gift from her mom. It was a great day.

The best part is that the weekend is still not over. Matt and I are headed to Apple Cup in just a little while. Hopefully my next post will include details of a Husky victory. GO DAWGS!



Saturday, November 7, 2009

The Holidays are Coming!




I couldn't be more excited. I love this time of year. While I'll admit that it does seem a little early for the red cups to be coming out at Starbucks, I still get that excited, cozy feeling that Thanksgiving and Christmas are just around the corner. With each year that goes by in my life, time seems to fly by faster and faster. When I was little, my brother and I would make Christmas countdown chains. It seemed to take forever to get to December. Now, I look at the calendar and wonder how it is already November. Last time I checked it seemed to still be summer. I'm not sure what the holidays will look like for the Newsome's this year. We still don't know Matt's schedule. He may be working for some, or all of the holidays. We might have to be flexible and have Christmas morning breakfast for dinner or open our presents on the 26th. We'll just have to see what happens...

In the meantime, I'm daydreaming about decorating our new house for the holidays. Sure, we're in the middle of installing lights in the kitchen and currently have no ceiling. That doesn't matter. I am already thinking about how cute our Christmas tree will look in our new living room. Along with decorating the house, I also have to decorate the puppy. Wouldn't Zeke look adorable in this reindeer collar? What about the plaid one? I discovered Pecan Pie Puppies and am absolutely in love with their collars. We'll see which collar I can convince Matt to get for our charming little guy.



Friday, November 6, 2009

Sad Day


Today is the memorial service for Officer Timothy Brenton, the Seattle police officer who was killed last weekend. It is so incredibly sad and terrible to think that someone could commit such a cold-blooded murder like this. Matt and I have definitely been shaken up by the whole event. I have been giving him an extra tight hug before he leaves for work every day, but at the same time I've been trying not to let myself get too worried about him. Events like this don't happen very often and my worrying won't help in any way. It has been comforting for me to see how the whole city and police department has come around the family and really honored this officer. I'm happy to know that Matt and I are part of a department that cares so much about its officers and family members. The whole event has been a dose of reality and a reminder for me to be thankful for each day.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Sick Days

This week, Matt's "weekend" fell on Wednesday and Thursday. He spent his days off being so productive - raking all the leaves in our yard, cleaning the gutters, and picking out new lights to be installed in our ceiling. I have spent the last 2 days feeling miserable. I'm not sure exactly what I have, but it has not been fun. It started on Tuesday after school and just kept getting worse. I should have listened to Matt when he told me not to work on Wednesday, but I was so excited about the Kindergarten class I've been teaching all week, that I made myself go in to work anyway. It was probably the worst day subbing I have ever had. My head and whole body ached. As I was teaching the phonics lesson and having the kids read words together as a class, I had to stop a few times and ask them to read the words quietly. Their excited little Kindergarten voices literally made my head pound with each word they read. I came home and went right to bed. I've had a fever, cough, body aches... swine flu? Maybe... It is enough that Matt is not taking chances and has been sleeping in the other room! I don't blame him. I'm probably pretty contagious. Matt has really taken care of me, though. It's pretty sweet. He's been bringing me sparkling water, advil, and my favorite sick day food of all time:


Even though Matt isn't willing to risk the germs he might contract from snuggling with me, I am so glad that I have my little buddy Zeke - the best snuggler. He has been keeping my company and helping my feel better in a way only a little furball can. He nuzzles right up to me and lays his head on my neck. Matt and I call it the fur scarf. It is warm, snuggly, and wonderful. I realize that this is the kind of thing I would think people were crazy for talking about. I mean, really... it's just a dog. But now that Zeke is part of our family, I can't help it. He's the best. I wish everyone could have a snuggle buddy like him.



Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Paper Training

We've been training Zeke to fetch the paper in the morning. As you can see, he still needs a little work. Overall, he's doing really well, though. What a good boy!

video

Update Time!


So much for my goal of trying to update this blog every week! Here we are in our new house with our new puppy. I guess it is time to officially introduce the little (not so little anymore) guy:

This is Zeke! We love him so much and can't believe how fast he's growing. Since we've brought him home, life has been busier and crazier for sure, but it has also been full of so many funny and happy moments. He is such a little furry ball of love. Here's the little nugget all curled up on his bed:

And playing with Matt, one of his favorite things to do!


More updates to come about the new house soon...

Monday, August 31, 2009

Dream Come True



On Saturday Matt and I went to pick out our puppy! We drove down to "just take a look" at some puppies we saw in the classified ads. As soon as we turned into the driveway, a big friendly yellow lab (the dad of the puppies!) came running up to meet our car and wagged his tail as we got out. As we looked over at a pen full of adorable puppy faces, Matt said, "We're getting a puppy today." I could hardly keep in the excitement as we walked over to hold them and play with them. We picked out our little guy, who Matt has affectionately nicknamed Thunderchunk. He is a hefty little puppy. We love him already and it was hard to say goodbye. We can take him home in 2 weeks - by then he will be big enough to leave his mom and we should be all moved in to our new place. We have so much to do before then! Along with moving, we need to get our house ready to share with a wiggly, energetic little ball of fur. Meanwhile, we have some time to think of a name... Until then, I get to think of little Thunderchunk playing with his brothers and sisters, getting ready to come join our family!


Friday, August 28, 2009

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Moving On


You wouldn't know it from walking into our house right now, but we are moving in 2 weeks. Right now, everything looks the same around here, with the exception of a few boxes my friend next door has donated. I think the reason I haven't started packing yet is because I just want to enjoy our place the way it is for a little longer. We've only lived here for one year, but in that time it has become home. It will always be special to us because it was our first place together. We made it through the giant snowstorm this winter and the heat wave this summer. We made it through some great meals like Matt's chicken parmesan and some horrible meals like the tropical shrimp and rice disaster. We've had some really great times here and I am going to miss it...

Things I will miss the most about Tara Townhomes Unit #2:
  • Our fabulous kitchen with all the brand-new appliances that were here when we moved in. I love all the counter space and the little "window" where I can look through to the living room while I'm cooking. I love how it's so pretty and bright on sunny mornings when I'm drinking my coffee and reading the paper.
  • Our pretty hardwood floors. That was the first thing we noticed about this place when we looked at it a year ago. In fact, Matt asked our landlord where he bought the wood because we would love to use the same kind in our new place someday.
  • Not having to worry about a yard/home maintenance. No longer will we have a landlord to call when things aren't working. We actually have to go out and buy a lawn mower for that nice big yard we are so excited about. Let's just say that our new yard has potential, but it needs work to look nice and pretty...
  • Our monthly rent payment. As nice as it will be that the payments we will now make are going toward our own home and not our landlord, I am going to miss the nice, low rent that we have been paying. I know that first mortgage payment is not going to be fun...
Things I am NOT going to miss:
  • Being able to hear our neighbors through the walls...
  • Collecting quarters for laundry and walking down to the end of our townhome complex to get to the washer and dryer.
  • Living in the "not so nice" part of South Everett and our proximity to Casino Road.
  • Vacuuming the stairs.
  • Our neighbor's cigarette smoke smell.
It has been great living here, but we are SO excited to move into our new house!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Mad Men

Somehow in the last year, I became hooked on Mad Men. It must be something about the great 60's clothes, the characters, and just how different life was then. I mean, smoking and drinking in the office all day? Anyway, tonight is the premiere of the new season and I am pretty excited. I'm going to watch it with Maddie, Amelia, and Autumn. Here are the Newsomes in Mad Men style. Aren't we fabulous?

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Puppy Fever

Daydreaming about getting a puppy has been an ongoing event in the Newsome household. It's one of our favorite things to talk about. What kind of puppy will we get someday? What will we name it? Should we get a boy or girl puppy? It has always been kind of a far-off event in our minds since our townhouse doesn't allow dogs. For Christmas, Matt gave me this book to daydream even more about what kind of dog we should get. After that, it seemed like I had a puppy every week that was going to be the perfect dog. We thought about wiener dogs (like Oscar, Matt's parents' dog) and boston terriers (like Caroline's sweet puppy, Coltrane). Now that we are going to be moving into a house with a nice, big backyard with a fence, we decided maybe we can get a bigger dog. Golden retrievers have always been my favorite, but Matt says they are too furry. I can understand that, I guess. It looks like the dog of our dreams might just be a yellow lab. After all, how could anyone not love a lab? I know we might need to wait a while after we move in and get everything settled, but I am SO excited about getting a puppy - I can hardly wait!

Ahhh... Someday!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Time to finally start this thing!

So clearly it is taking me a while to catch on to this blogging thing.  As you can see, I first started this blog quite a while ago and have written NOTHING since then.  I've been having so much fun lately following some of the great blogs of my friends, that I decided to write a little on here.  There has just been so much happening in our lives lately that I wanted to share it.  In fact, considering that I started this blog in November of last year, let me go through some of the major events that have happened since then:

  • Matt's new job:  This is a big one.  After a crazy process of tests, interviews, background checks and polygraphs, Matt was offered a job with the Seattle Police Department.  He started the academy in February and graduated on June 24th - big day, very exciting... but really only the beginning...  Since then, he has been doing more training with his department.
  • Last night was his first night out on patrol with his new field training officer.  The way I understand this part of the training is that it is kind of like student teaching was for me.  You are doing everything as a real officer, but you are under the leadership of another, more experienced officer who is basically grading you the whole time.  It is pretty nerve-wracking.  We are jumping right into a crazy lifestyle change, too - night shift in the south precinct.  It is about noon right now and Matt is sleeping.  He got home at 5 in the morning.  It was kind of tough last night trying to go to sleep without him.  Luckily, in about a month he will get to try day shift in the east precinct with a different field training officer.
  • As for my job, I am still searching for a permanent teaching position.  I spent the last school year subbing in the Everett and Mukilteo districts and to my surprise, I loved it.  It was really fun to teach a different class every day and to try out different grade levels.  I finished up the school year with a great first grade class that I taught for two months while their teacher was on maternity leave.  Having a long-term position at the end of the school year made me realize how much I want my own classroom again.  Unfortunately, it is slim pickings for teaching jobs this year.  I had an interview earlier this summer that didn't lead to a second interview :(  It has been tough getting those "rejection" emails from some of the jobs I've applied to.  It looks like I will start out the new school year as a sub again.  I actually am really thankful that I can even sub again because most districts aren't even hiring new subs.  Whew!  Luckily I have already been hired as a sub in Everett and Mukilteo.  
  • The other big event for us is our new house!  We have been looking for the past few months with our good friend and amazing realtor, Casey Price.  We have seen some houses we've liked, but nothing that we loved.  The advice we've gotten is that we will "just know" when we find the right house - and sure enough, it happened just like that.  We had been looking in the North Seattle/Shoreline/Edmonds area and hadn't looked farther north.  One day I saw a house online that looked cute, but it was in Everett.  I thought it would probably be too far north for us, but I drove by anyway.  I just fell in love with the neighborhood and called Matt right away.  We looked at it with Casey later that week and just knew that this was a great house.  We reached an agreement with the sellers on a good price and have been moving forward with the process of buying it!  We are hoping to move in in early September.  So excited!  

Well, I think that's enough updating for now.  Let's see if I can keep up my goal of adding a new post every week...