Catch Up—Part 1

So, I have been kinda quiet the last month. You may be wondering what I have been doing since school is out. I will attempt to catch you up on my life. Smile Be prepared for it to be a rather long post. Winking smile

Well, first off I had to sort through everything at school and clear all of my stuff out and prepare things for the next teacher.


This is only one of the piles of trash I threw out. I think it was maybe 3 trash bags in all.

Thankfully, a girl from Georgia took a lot of my decorations so I didn’t have to pitch them.

I also did some projects I hadn’t had time to do during school, like organizing this construction paper.


L to R: Before. During. After. Smile

I also made a filing system for student records. (Below)


Besides sorting through my school stuff I also had my stuff at the house to go through.

I took quite a few boxes to yard sale and then what was left I took to Salvation Army.

Here is the car full of stuff for yard sale.


Once I sorted things at school, thing I had to figure out where to go with those things at the house…


I packed up three boxes of books and sent them to Virginia. Media mail is wonderful! Winking smile


I did have some fun times amidst my packing and sorting. Smile

I helped Brenda clean church the one day and then we went shopping.

Another afternoon I went for frozen yogurt and to paint pottery with some of the church ladies to celebrate Ashley’s birthday.




Something else fun I did was take a mini vacation with Brenda. We went to Ouray and went shopping and hiking. Then we spent the night at Box Canyon Lodge where we enjoyed soaking in the hot springs. Ahh. After a laid back morning the next day we headed to Montrose and had lunch and did some more shopping.

Cascade Falls


The first picture is water from one of the hot springs coming down over the rocks. The second pictures is the hot tub filled with water from the hot springs.


And the view from the hill above the lodge.


I was privileged to be able to attend  my student Micah’s graduation party before I left Colorado.



The Saturday before I left the men were working calves so we went to watch and enjoy the sunshine.



So much stuff to try to pack. And so much left behind. But finally I got it all sorted.


When I got to Grand Junction the lady at the check-in counter was fussy about the weight of my suitcases. No luck with getting a couple extra pounds through this time. Then when I got to security my backpack and carry-on (purple one) were so full they pulled them out and searched them while I sat there quite impatiently but trying to be patient. I got to the gate with only a few minutes to spare, hoping and praying they would not fuss about my stuffed carry-on. The gate attendant looked at me and said in a kinda grouchy tone, “Next time don’t bring that big of a carry-on. We have to follow FDA regulations.” I just said, “Ok” and quickly hurried on through, thanking God that I had been able to get it on the plane!


Amazingly all my flights went well and I made it pretty much on time to Wisconsin.

I will continue the story in Wisconsin next time.


Class Trips and Good Days

This school year I have a star chart.


Every time my students get a hundred percent or a perfect lesson they get to put a star up. We have been celebrating every 100th star. My original goal for them was 800. They are now almost at 1000!

(We did a chart last year as well but only for Test and Quizzes. We celebrated every 75th Star and had a goal of 300 which we surpassed. Thanks to Wendell Miller for the idea.)

I’m not sure if I remember every thing we did, but I will share some pictures from a few of the bigger things we did as rewards for the star chart this year.

We had a picnic lunch in Ouray and then visited Box Canyon Falls (Box Cañon).





We went to Junction and had lunch at Chick-fil-A and went skating at Glacier Ice Arena. (Thanks to Haley for taking these while I was busy skating.)





One afternoon we went into Delta for coffee.

This is the only picture I have from that.



We had some smaller things just at school like Game Day and a pizza party to celebrate other star goals. I don’t think I have pictures of those.

The most recent excursion was our biggest for the year. It was to celebrate our original goal of reaching 800.

We went took the whole day off school and went to hiking at Colorado National Monument. We ate a picnic lunch there and then went to Bananas Fun Park in Grand Junction and played Laser Tag.

Here are a few pictures from the hike.


The boys liked hiking right on the edge while the girls were happy to try safe things like going through a tunnel in the rock.



I had put off this trip for awhile because I was very busy and also because I was waiting for nice weather. Then I suddenly realized I needed to get it done before Micah was done with his work and out of school. I have to admit I lacked faith that it would all work out at the last minute. But God answered my prayers despite my weak faith and everything came together amazingly well! Thanks, Mariann, for being willing to drive us and help chaperone! I really enjoyed the day and I think the students did too.

It was definitely one of my best days in awhile! And another wonderful part of it was not having checking to do that evening! (I did have typing papers that I checked Saturday.) I was able to spend my evening sewing and finish a dress. (Finally a Sunday dress for Spring!)  And that Saturday I was able to take an hour and go four-wheeling with one of my students and enjoy it without feeling the pressure of school work that needed done. That afternoon I went to school and administered Micah’s diploma-qualifying test. It was good to get that out of the way! I can hardly believe I have a student graduating!

The next week was a bit more hectic as we had only 2.5 days of school and then Easter break and I was trying to get ready to leave for Nevada. But we got everything done that needed done. And although my packing was so hasty I forgot a few things, I had a very good vacation in Nevada. It is amazing what a little rest and relaxation can do for a person! Thanks to Kendra and her family for allowing me to come!

This past week at school went pretty well. I was blessed Thursday by having Heidi help me with checking after school! As I had typing to check that evening and packing to do it was a great boost!

Over the weekend we teachers babysat for one of the families in Delta. I wasn’t sure how it would be, but I got my checking done in decent time Friday evening and was able to enjoy the weekend. And with three babysitters we even had some leisure time!

Now just to make it through the last two weeks of school! Thanks to everyone who has been praying for me! I would ask that you continue to pray that I could just remember to focus on one moment at a time and that I would hand all my burdens over to Christ and not try to bear them on my own.

Well, as is usual, this post took longer and turned out differently than I though it would, but it does catch you up on my life a bit and finally I’ve posted some pictures!

Wishing everyone a wonderful week filled with blessings from the Lord!

Every 15th Photo

I was recently reading my friend Luci’s blog and she did a post of every 15th photo on her phone. As I was reading, I was thinking, This is a kinda cool idea. Then, at the end of her post she challenged each of us to make a post of every 15th photo. So, here I am, up for the challenge. Smile


#1 Blue fabric

A piece of fabric that I am thinking about trying to sell on Fabric Swappers. I had gotten it for serving at a wedding, but then I ended up moving to Colorado to teach school and didn’t go to that wedding. I do love the color though!


#2 Super Ninja Throwing Stars

We made these in art class today. Everyone had a lot of fun making them, even those who think art is usually boring. Smile


#3 Silverton Durango Train.

Some of Jen’s family was here over the weekend and we four-wheeled over the mountain to Silverton and had lunch there.


#4 Scoring box from Keyboarding LightUnit.

I was trying to figure out how the scoring works and so took a picture to email to CLP to ask how I was to do it. I think I have it figured out now.


#5 Paper towel curtain.

This is what happens when the teacher hasn’t made curtains yet. The students improvise with a paper towel roll. Winking smile


#6 Buck crossing lane.

I saw this fellow on our lane one night one my way home from youth.


#7 Books!

Some books I ordered off Amazon. Books are my weakness.


#8 S’moratilla.

Our invention when camping this summer. I called it a S’mores Quesadilla, but my cousin Trenton christened it a S’moratilla and the name stuck. Instead of using bread in a mountain pie iron, I used half a tortilla and then filled it with peanut butter, mini marshmallows, and chocolate chips. It was delicious!


# 9 Larita

Darla and I went up to Seney, MI, this summer to help with Vacation Bible School. One day some of us went fishing on Lake Superior. The weather was beautiful and we had a very good day!


#10 Juicy Hamburger

Whenever we needed a quick supper this summer, I usually made hamburgers. They are quick and easy and always delicious!


#11 Breakfast

This was a fairly normal breakfast for me this summer. One or two eggs fried over easy mixed with sautéed fajita mix and sausage. Sometimes I added salsa as well. Very delicious and healthy!


#12 Delicious Salad

I always enjoy a good salad!


#13 Maid of Honor

My best friend (and cousin) got married this summer and I was privileged to be her maid of honor.


#14 Colorado Rockies

A picture I took on my flight from Montrose to Denver this spring.


#15 Man standing on cliff

This spring Jen and I went with Jeremy and Kristina and their family to Moab, UT. This is a pic from some of the four-wheeling we did.


#16 Utah rock

Another picture from four-wheeling.


#17 Four Wheelers

And yet another four-wheeling picture.


#18 Lilacs

These beautiful flowers were brought to me at school this spring.


#19 Daphnee

I had night school with my students this spring and we had a cereal party after their work was done.


#20 On The Border

This spring we stopped in Denver on our way to Cheyenne and of course we had to eat at On The Border. Smile

Well, this post took longer than I thought it would even though it didn’t take much thought. Smile Now you have seen a few slices of my life over the summer. Comment on your favorite picture or share a link to your own post of every 15th picture off your phone.


Well, here it is already February and I haven’t done any posting. Sad smile Sometimes I debate whether I should even have a blog. Maybe with G+ and Facebook, I don’t need a blog to keep people updated. And I hardly ever email any more. It doesn’t help that I still haven’t recovered my gmail account. Sad smile I guess I need to set up a new one. For now I am using my Martin Photography account.

A big change in January was the passing of my Grandma Martin. We miss her, but are happy that she is now cancer free and living with Jesus. Her life is definitely an inspiration and challenge for me! So a week after being back in Colorado after Christmas break, I headed back to to VA for the funeral. It was fun to see my cousins that I haven’t seen for a long time.

Now I feel like I can catch up on some stuff here, but somehow I always have more than enough projects to do. Now you now why I don’t get around to posting. Between school stuff, sewing, family, youth, and exercising, there just doesn’t seem to be time to fit everything in.

Something exciting to look forward to is that 2 of my cousins are getting married this spring. Derek and his fiancée Angela are getting married May 20 and then Connie and her fiancé Lyle are getting married June 11. I’m especially excited because I get to be Connie’s maid of honor! Smile And Connie, Kendra, Beth, and I will all be together before the wedding!

So here are a few random photos to make the post a bit more interesting: my winter bulletin board, our house and the chicken barn in the snow, my class on wacky day, and a random babysitting pic.

And, if you think I should keep blogging, comment and let me know! Thanks!

End of 2015

Well, here we are to the end of 2015. And, no, I am not caught up with my blog. Sad smile I did not recover my email, so you can still remember that in your prayers. I feel like I almost know my password, but it just won’t quite come to me exactly. :/  But I have some more important prayer request than that. On the 17th of December Twila Wingard died of cancer. (I had written a bit about her in the spring.) She leaves behind a husband and two children age 9 and 6. (They attend our school.) So just remember them in their grief. Also, pray for my Grandma Martin who is dying of cancer. I value the time I am able to spend with her over this Christmas break, because I probably will not see her alive again. She has not been having pain with it, so that is very nice. She just continually grows weaker. We local Martins went in and sang for her on Christmas morning. Granddad wanted some Christmas songs, but she wanted us to sing all her funeral songs first. She still has some spunk. Smile 

I have been enjoying catching up with people while I am in Virginia over Christmas break. The first Sunday we had “Christmas at church.” This is when everyone brings gifts to hand out to the other people at church. I got candy, perfume, lotion, socks, and more. That evening was the Berea school program. I had not been to a VA school program since I moved to Colorado so that was special. And I got to talk to Audrey, Miriam, Janine, Sarah, Janell, and Nellie.  I was at Connie’s Wednesday night and Thursday. Friday we had our Martin Christmas dinner at Uncle Art’s. Saturday morning I went out for Breakfast and then shopping with Connie and Lyle and Josh and Clinton. Sunday I went down to Uncle Art’s for lunch since they were having some other of my friends over too. Then I stopped by Granddad’s on my way home. I look forward to spending more time with some of my friends this week.

And one more note: It has been unseasonably warm! In the 70s some days! And very rainy. Looks like I’m missing out on the cold and snow in Colorado. Minus all the rain, I do enjoy the warm weather. Smile 

Blessings to everyone, and a Happy New Year!


Back to Colorado!

Well, this may be a kinda random post of catching you up on a few of the happenings in my life the last while. Flew to Colorado on August 25. For the most part everything went very smoothly. We did have to wait a bit in Salt Lake for a crew, but only got into Junction a few minutes late. The worst part of the day was sitting beside a child/teen with very bad BO! Sad smile I was never so glad to get off an airplane! At least it was only an hour flight and I was able to sleep for some of it. Brenda kindly picked me up in Junction and brought me home. I came back to new carpet in my room and new furniture. Smile Well, new for me anyway. When they did the carpet they decided the bedroom set was too trashy to put back in my room so I got Arlin’s old set. That is nice since some of the drawer handles were off the other set and some of the drawers didn’t work very well. But, I had to find a new home for things. I was very glad for the organizing I had done last school year, but really need to do some more. Maybe I have too much stuff….

I worked at school everyday from the time I came until the day school started. I had hoped to get done sooner, but had some difficulties with my birthday chart. I had an idea in mind but wasn’t quite sure how to work it out in real life. So I went online and found a picture of a banana leaf, then used an overhead projector and drew it off onto poster board. I did 12 of them. Then I colored them all using oil pastels. Then I cut them out. Everything good so far. Hmm. Might be nice to have them laminated. Oops! Not a good idea. The oil pastels melted off. Sad smile Now what. I had to think of plan B.  So, I went back into town and took the leaves to get color copied. They wouldn’t be ready till the next morning. Ok. So the next morning she called and said they were ready. I took my scissors with me and after picking up the leaves went to Starbucks and got some coffee and sat there for an hour cutting leaves out. When I was about halfway done I called the Laminating place and told them I was bringing in some stuff to get laminated.  She said, “Ok. I start warming up the machine.” But, I got there only to find out she had gotten too busy and wasn’t able to do them right away. Bummer! Sad smile So I had to go back in town that evening to pick them up. Then they had to be cut out yet. Needless to say, that project took way longer than I wanted. But I did get it up before school started. Smile I felt way more ready for school this year than any year yet. I’m glad I allowed as much time as I did to get ready. My theme this year is tree frogs. Here is a picture of my Birthday chart:


Oh, and the first day I started working at school I was cleaning my walls. When I went to move my bookcase out from the wall it was rather wobbly. I decided I was tired of this pitiful bookcase that the back didn’t stay on and wasn’t very sturdy. I went to town looking for a bookcase. After looking at Salvation Army and ReStore in Montrose and finding nothing suitable, I went to Renovator’s warehouse in Delta where I found a sturdier one that would work. It is veneer, not solid wood, but much better than my last one. The next day I went and picked it up and took it to school. I took all the books and stuff out of my old bookcase. Then I scooted it out from the wall and moved the new bookcase in. Well, when I went to move the old bookcase totally out of the room, the bottom part just collapsed! I was so glad the books were already off of it and I had another bookcase! I can only imagine if that would have happened during class when the bookcase was loaded with books!!

Here is a picture of my class this year:


Daphnee         Ashley          Haley       Briana        Micah       Shane      Brian

Daphnee and Haley are sisters and Ashley is their cousin.

Briana, Micah, and Shane are also siblings.

Ashley and Shane are in 6th grade. Brian is in 7th.  Briana and Daphnee are in 8th.

Haley in 9th. And Micah in 10th.

Well, I could write much more, but my fingers are going to sleep so it is getting a little hard to type so I guess I will sign off for now.

I would love to hear from y’all! –Rachel

April 2015

Well, it has been quite awhile since I have posted! The month of April was fairly busy.

Easter weekend I went to Nevada to visit Kendra and her family. It was great seeing everyone there again!

Believe it or not I hardly took any pictures while I was there. So here a a couple from the ones I have.

Part of Ruby Canyon (from the Train).


A pic of Kenj at an old mine we four-wheeled to.


The next weekend we 4 youth girls from Sunnyview went to Westcliffe to visit Vernon Yoders. We visited the Royal Gorge on Saturday and then did some thrift store shopping in Cañon City. I thought the zip line across the Gorge looked like a lot of fun, but as no one else in my group was going to do it, I decided not to spend money on it. (So, if you are ever going and plan to do the zip line, let me know so I can come join you. Winking smile )


the four youth girls                                            Brenda and Ashley


We rode the Gondolas over the Gorge and then walked back to the visitors center over the Bridge. Being there and seeing all the damage that was done by the fire really makes me wish I would have been there before the fire in 2012. But it is still a gorgeous place to visit. I’m glad I was able to go.

On the 21st of April we had our second school field trip for the year. First we went to a Trampoline Park and were there an hour. Then we ate lunch at a park. In the afternoon we had the skating rink for an hour. All in all it was a very fun field trip! The kids loved it and and so did the teachers. Smile 


foam pits


Trampoline Basketball


Climbing wall  (there is a foam pit below)


The big boys give swing rides


And sorry, but I don’t have any pictures of skating. Every time I get so busy skating I don’t take any pictures. Sad smile