Sunday, 8 September 2013

52 Weeks of Happy...8/52

"The happiest people don't have the best of everything, 
they just make the best of everything."
Joining in with Jen at little birdy and Gillian at Tales From A Happy House

As you can imagine there's been little else on my mind this week.

Starting school 
I survived my first week as a teacher - hooray! 
Do you think I should have earned a sticker or certificate?

The feeling at the end of the week was rather odd as unlike my peers from my PGCE course I could not claim to have completed a first week of teaching. Although I felt tired this was more due to with setting up the Nursery classrooms (a huge job!) than any lengthy interaction with children. I suppose my time will come and I'll feel both relieved and exhausted as my friends have been this weekend.

I won't have a full class until 30th September when all the children will have started. We have a drop-in play day on 20th September when the children can come in to see the classroom with their parents and carers; then the following week I begin a phased start with 12 starting on the Monday, another 12 on the Wednesday and a final 12 the following Monday.

I've had a lovely start to my teaching career. The staff in my school have been so friendly and welcoming, everyone has been so approachable. From Wednesday I've been on Home Visits to meet the children and their parents. I always go with one other Nursery Practitioner (I have two colleagues in Nursery to support me) and we spend about 20 minutes with each family, getting to know the children and completing final paperwork with the parents. All the families have been so friendly and are keen for their children to get the best start to their school career but without being too pushy. I believe it's important at this age for the children to be happy and want to be at school before you can even start thinking about learning and so far most parents seem to agree with this ethos.

I've saved my photos of the classrooms for a big reveal later in the month when it looks complete and ready. Some days I look at it and think that it will never be right and on others I can see that it is starting to come together. I'm hoping I'll feel more of the latter this week as I'd like to get it completed by next Friday to avoid a last minute panic during the final week of home visits.

The school crossing plaque was photographed at the Beamish Living Museum back in August. I thought it was very appropriate and loved the 1950s styling. I don't think that children look quite so smart these days when they're rushing to/from school.

Kind words and gestures
I've been the recipient of so many kind words and gestures from friends and family this week (including the messages from you - thank you!). I have had lots of good luck cards and texts to make me feel excited and capable as so often I feel just nervous that I won't be able to do the job. It has been more than enough to keep me going and make me smile.

The personalised 'teacher pocket' was a first-day present from Mr P. I'd spotted it a while ago on Sew Sweet Violet's blog and after adding it to Pinterest, he sneakily purchased it from her Not On The High Street shop. Like all her pretty things, isn't it quite? When my classrooms are ready I'm looking forward to finding a nice spot to hang it up and keep all my must-haves (probably post-its and pens) handy.

Autumnal cake
Having read lots of lovely posts about people feeling autumnal, I don't think we've quite reached this point in London yet. It has mostly been a very warm and sunny week, even the rainy days that were promised for Friday and Saturday didn't fully materialise and the grey dampness did not last for long and this morning the sky is blue and full of sunshine.

Nonetheless, I really wanted to do some autumnal cooking and on Saturday afternoon I made this Blackberry Cake using a recipe given to me by a lovely friend. I've sampled the cake many times at birthday parties and special occasions and it is completely delicious and as I've discovered is very easy to make. I shall have to ask if I can share it with you because it's too nice to keep to oneself!


  1. Some great happy things. It is definitely autumn up here where I am - it's lovely - cold, foggy mornings and turning leavings. I'm glad you've settled in ok at school and I'll look forward to seeing your classroom :)

  2. I'm so glad your first few days went well. Your school sounds really nice. Lucky kids having you as their teacher. I love that old sign, it's fantastic. And how lovely of Mr P to buy you that gorgeous teacher pocket, it's so pretty. Hope next week goes as well for you. xx

    1. Oh, and thanks for your Tiger stores tip - my friend was recently telling me how good they are. Annoyingly, all their shops are based around London. x

  3. Lovely snippets from your week and pleased to hear your new colleagues have been so welcoming. Your cake looks delish so hope you get to share the recipe.

  4. The exciting story of your week.

  5. I am very eager to see your classroom reveal! If it matches the sweet teacher pocket, it is sure to be charming. Mother Nature hasn't quite caught up with September here. I am anxious to pull out my sweaters, but we are still in the 90's this week, sigh. The cake looks delicious!

  6. How did this post pass me by? I'm having trouble with Bloglovin for some reason. So a belated best of British to you. Lovely happies, and I am so glad that you are enjoying the beginning of your teaching career. How very exciting for you.

    I went to Beamish at the weekend, without a camera which was so stupid because it was a snaptastic place.

    Leanne xx

  7. Haven't heard from you for a while, how is it going? Hope you are well :)

    1. I'm good - thanks! I've not had any Internet for a little while - back up and running now. Hope everything is going well at school! x

  8. I've been reading your blog for a couple of months now, enjoying your words and photos. Hope all is going well at school - enjoy your weekend.


    1. Thanks Louise! Lovely to hear from you. Sorry there's not been any posts for a while. I'll be back up and running soon! x