October 26, 2015

How to avoid jail time during a triple threat week

I've never really been much on superstitions. I think the closest I've ever been to believing one is if a virgin lights the black candle on Hocus Pocus, the Sanderson sisters will appear and terrorize your neighborhood.

However as I've gotten older and have gained more life experience I have come to truly believe in one superstition: crazy things happen when there is a full moon. More specifically children and especially teenagers tend to morph into little (and sometimes big) gremlins.

Now that you understand how frightening that can be let's add some whipped cream to the top of the sundae by stating the obvious that this coming weekend is Halloween and no respectable teenager can come to school without at least attempting to have a costume on because they just can't resist.

And finally the cherry on top of the Sundae: They are all going to be well rested and feeling like they have spring fever because they have been stuck in their homes for a little over 4 days.

We hit the lottery this week.

If you're anything like me you might need to take a couple WOOSAH moments this week so I've compiled a few things that I think might help.

Stay Caffeinated. On a week like this limiting your caffeine or trying not to drink it at all is just setting yourself up for failure. Don't set yourself up for failure. You're going to need the extra boost to keep up.

Pray. A lot. Have you been slacking on your Bible or Devotional reading? This is the perfect week to get back to it because it's only going to be by the grace of God that you survive.

Eat the chocolate. And if you don't have any to eat, buy the chocolate then eat the chocolate. I suggest dark chocolate covered espresso beans. Two birds with one stone. I know, I'm an overachiever. But they really are delicious.

Laugh. Finding humor in tough situations is a lifeline. Use it.

Drink. Disclaimer: Not promoting alcohol consumption. I was thinking more along the lines of staying hydrated with water, but hey if you're a big kid choose a big kid beverage if you want. Not judging at all. Ok, maybe just a little but I am trying not to.

And those are my suggestions on how to avoid jail time during a triple threat week.
Happy Monday.

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October 12, 2015

If you met me in real life....

You'd quickly find out these things about me:

I talk with my hands. A LOT. Like it just doesn't make sense to talk with your hands as much as I do.

My face makes it really hard for me to hide stuff from anyone. For instance, I love playing practical jokes on people at work, but I STRUGGLE to keep it to myself or to keep a straight face when I'm asked about it.

My life revolves around when my next meal will be and what I'll be having for it. Ask Mr. L. I bet he will say his most dreaded text message from me is "What should we have for dinner?" Which I generally send several hours beforehand when it makes no sense to be worried about what's for dinner. Speaking of food- check out my recipes page to see the awesome pumpkin protein pancake recipe I made Sunday!

My dog is my child. See below. Even when we lived in Indiana we used to do things you would generally only do with human children.

Coffee is a necessity. If I don't have it, I'm probably going to fall asleep sitting up or yell at someone. I just wish Keurig would quit cramping my style by trying to reject my favorite non keurig k-cups, don't worry we overcame that obstacle. Mr. L is kind of a MacGyver. Sorry Keurig.

And lastly, I'm passionate about the things I do. Go ahead and try to get in the way of something I've set my mind to. It won't work. I think that doubles as "You're bossy". But I'll take passionate.

And now that I've ratted myself out, I'll let you go for the day. I have an important meeting with my friend On Demand. Blood and Oil, here I come!

Monday you were alright, Tuesday...be good to me.

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September 27, 2015

Resources for counselors

Looking for some school counseling/education resources? Look no further! I am going to supply you with a list of my go to books. These are not conventional resources, I like to pull ideas from lots of different places and translate them into what works for my program and my kiddos. However, these are great for counselors, teachers, and parents alike. In no particular order:

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens
This book is great for anyone to read, but especially anyone with a teenager in their life. We base almost our whole counseling program off of this, teaching our students qualities that will help them be successful beyond middle school.

How to Win Friends & Influence People
LOVE this book. I've read it more than once and made notes translating them into kid friendly language. I think the principles in this book are good for EVERYONE, but especially great for helping middle schools develop better social skills.

The 40 Day Soul Fast
To say I'm obsessed would minimize my feelings towards this book. Character education set on fire. Yes it's for adults, but where do you think you should start when trying to change the lives of others? Changing your own life and transforming yourself from within. This book is amazing.

The 6 Most Important Decisions You'll Ever Make
This book is in kid friendly language and is written from the perspective of a teenager. I've based some counseling groups off this for 6th graders in previous years. It's a good book to help bridge the gap between being a child and being a teenager.

What Color Is your Parachute? for Teens.
This book is a little more advanced for middle schoolers, but we have been using it to guide us on career readiness lessons we want to provide for our 8th graders. I love the Holland Code section as well as the parachute that students fill in their traits, strengths, weaknesses, and other important information. (I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review).

These are just a few books I like to refresh my memory on before coming up with group activities and classroom lesson plans. I like to bring in a lot of different sources because I feel like my middle schoolers look at traditional sources like they are too kiddy. Do you have any good books that would be helpful for me to draw from for counseling inspiration? Let me know! I'd love to hear from you!

Have a great week!
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April 22, 2015

You know, Marvel and stuff...

Usually when you picture a superhero you see Spiderman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and so on and so forth. Right? I know that’s what I would picture. Actually I also picture the Hulk because my co-counselor has one of those huge cardboard cut outs of the Hulk right on his office wall so I’m like staring at it everyday.

Anyways, the reason superheroes are on my mind this week is because we’ve been running a school contest for our students to create their own Harns Marsh superhero. We did this for a couple reasons. We knew the teachers could use a go-to during state standardized testing because we all know that's enough to give anyone a full head of grays and also to teach the kids about Habit 7 of Highly Effective Teens: Synergize.

This is the video my co-counselor made to promote the contest.

And this is the worksheet we provided to give them some direction.

Pretty snazzy lesson, right? Lots of our teachers opted to do the contest and as we were getting our entries back, a thought crossed my mind. What if the traditional view of a superhero is totally wrong? What if it’s not someone who goes out and fights criminals with a cape and undies on? Or someone with a visible super power? What if the real superhero is the person next to you?

I think it’s you. ANY of you. And with that being said, you should know the 4 traits I think a super hero has. (And if anyone would listen to me they would think a real super hero has these traits too.)

A servant’s heart
Genuine love for others
Faith (and lot’s of it)
A smile (even when they don’t feel like it)

Obviously these aren’t the only traits a real life super hero has, but I think they’re a few of the most important. Are you any or all of these things? I’ll bet you’re a super hero. Tell me, what’s your super power?

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April 10, 2015

5 things you should know about middle schoolers.

Or maybe you shouldn't know. I feel like this could go one of two ways. You could either think these are hysterical (like me) or feel really sad for the future of our country (also like me). Either way here goes!

5.  They are really excellent spellers.

4.  They are knowledgeable about technology.

3. They pay VERY close attention in U.S. history.

2. They love a good, classic movie.

1. (And my favorite) They're really understanding.

DISCLAIMER: the answers you see here are from a small sample of students who were placed in a behavior intervention group; it's not representative of my whole school. I may or may not have exaggerated just a little on the statement of feeling 'really sad for the future of our country'. I did not however exaggerate on thinking they're hilarious.

Oh and Happy FRIDAY!

Linking up today, check out some other 5 on Friday posts.

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March 20, 2015

Things that could be considered crazy

5. The number of times I've looked up SeaWorld this week because I’m going tomorrow. Yes I am nearing 30, and yes I’m still excited. (I haven’t seen the movie Blackfish and I know I will ugly-cry and boycott SeaWorld if I ever do so let me enjoy tomorrow first.)

4. How much I LOVE punching things. That sounds horribly offensive and like I am super crazy, but to clarify- I do Krav Maga and just started going back to my Level 2 classes. I forgot how much it helps me de-stress at the end of a hard day. Curious about Krav? Check out these links! Click here for a quick history lesson and description; but if you are in the area and interested in trying out a class check out New World: Krav Maga & Crossfit.

3. The new fashion trend of joggers. My students LOVE joggers. I don’t even know what more to say about this. I know I shouldn't be surprised of this fashion trend, but they just weird me out.

2. The fact that saying a simple prayer can give you the energy you need to get through a tough day. My last post talked about how I am currently running on fumes, and because of that I have definitely relied on God A LOT this week to get me through.

1. That as a school we collected 2,460 cans to donate to CCMI (a local soup kitchen), that our students were able to feel what it’s like to give back, and that a parent who has received donations from the soup kitchen in the past was able to bring in 272 cans for her daughter’s class because she wanted to pay it forward. UNREAL.

Motivational box created by Kayley Ingle

I can't even. This is just amazing.

Happy Friday!!
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January 28, 2015

Quail Woman Attemps Dog Rescue

Welcome to Counselor with a Cape 2.0. This is my new home! I hope you like it. All of my previous posts from WordPress are located in the archives here, so don’t worry- if there’s something you liked you can still access it. Take a look around. I think you’ll like what you see. I will add new content frequently, so don’t miss out.

To kick things off here at my new location I’d like to provide a giveaway to all my loyal readers. Wanna know how to win? The first 50 people who submit their e-mail address at the very bottom of this page to subscribe to Counselor with a Cape will be entered in a drawing for a box of my ultimate favorite workout/energy drink. ADVOCARE SPARK! YASSSS! Ready, set, GO! The winner will be announced at the beginning of next week!

As for counselor world and life in general, it’s getting exciting. For those of you who don’t know, I’m getting married in A MONTH. That being said, things could start getting crazy hectic anytime now. I keep telling myself- “DON’T. START. PANICKING.” So far, I have been relatively calm throughout the process so I hope things remain that way.

Today though, I wish I legitimately had a cape. I’d wear it. You don’t believe me? Picture Quail Man. Remember him? From that old cartoon Doug. (If you are near my age and you didn’t watch Doug we can’t be friends anymore). Anyways, one of my precious students left a dog tied up to a post at his bus stop this morning. I’m sure his heart was in the right place, but clearly we were concerned. Fast forward a little….and dun, dun, DUN… Counselor with a Cape to the rescue. I drove out to the boonies to save the pup. Of course when I got there the student’s mother, who we could not reach on the 100 phone numbers we had for her, had gone to get the pup and taken it home. I know because I went to his house to make sure it was there. Some might say that’s a little crazy, I call it a love for my students mixed with a bleeding heart for animals. Works for me.

Happy Wednesday from the Marsh!

Adios! -K

January 24, 2015

Changed Womans

After all the crazy events that went down last week at the Marsh, I decided the weekend called for a breather. I even took a glorious two-hour nap on Sunday; which is basically unheard of in my world. If you know me at all, you know I can’t stop moving. Picture Ricky Bobby in Talladega Nights “I don’t know what to do with my hands.” Lol.
But for real. I needed a break and when I was taking said break I thought of this quote. I’m going to butcher it a little, but Google doesn’t even know if FDR or Thomas Jefferson actually said it so I feel like it’s okay. “What do you do when you’re at the end of your rope? You hold on tighter and brace yourself for the wild ride ahead.” That’s not the exact quote, but that’s what it translates to in my mind. And that’s what I decided before I came back into work on Tuesday. Going back to last week, I am where I am for a reason. If I’m going to be here I may as well make it awesome right? So, Tuesday morning I went back in ready to kick ass.
Here’s how I felt by Thursday morning:

Just kidding. I was still ready to dance to the Rocky theme song pulling into the Marsh’s parking lot. And for good reason. Yesterday my girls counseling group met. The group is called GLOW which stands for “Girls Leading Our World”. However, for the last 6 months all GLOW has been leading in is discipline referrals. I decided that this was the wild ride I was in for, so I was ready to give them a fresh start. It was almost like impostors came to group. They were all smiling, happy, excited, and positive. We did discipline card checks and they hit their goal for the first time this year; they were legit screaming in the front office conference room. Oopsie. So, for getting only 3 points they get to wear their snazzy GLOW t-shirts tomorrow as well as get a snack (Publix Cupcakes, duh). Anyway my point is that I didn’t give up on them when I really wanted to. Instead, I gave them another chance. And I am super pumped that I did, because they made me really proud yesterday. Especially when one of them said “Misssss, we are changed womans.” J
Today I want to leave you with this, I’ll call it: Tips for working with groups that could eat you alive.
  1. Gain their trust.
  2. Be confident. If you don’t know the answer act like you do. (I don’t necessarily condone lying, however desperate times call for desperate measures…..JK… kind of.)
  3. And lastly, NEVER give up. Just when you want to… the unspeakable can happen. Like them hitting their goal. For the first time. This. Year.
Yay for GLOW t-shirts tomorrow! (And FRIDAY BREAKFAST!!- That’s a whole post of it’s own though.). Adios Thursday. I’m ready for the weekend!