go tigers

Jon's mom came into town this past weekend and we had such a nice visit. She went with Lydda Grace and me to LG's checkup and we got a good report on her finger. She's still got to keep it bandaged b/c she keeps wanting to pick at the stitches, but it's doing really well.

This was also the last homegame of the year. We went out to hear the band play in the amphitheater and Lydda Grace LOVED it! We will definitely be trying this again next year!

Aunt Bekah and Uncle Javi came for the game and ate with us and visited for a while. Jon and Javier of course played some football on the Xbox. Lydda Grace got into the action too.

little helper

Lydda Grace is really getting into "helping" when I'm in the kitchen. She'll hand me silverware out of the dishwasher to put away and always wants to see what's going on when I'm cooking. Here she is with my apron on stirring and "painting" with the pastry brush. As you can see in the background she's a big help with the kitchen dish towels as well!! :)


What is the hardest thing at your job?

Well, I am excited to reflect this week as I read the reading. I say this because of two reasons. One, in chapter 23, the discussion of standards. And two, in chapter 24, building colleagues is complicated.

As I was reading about the different places standards are placed and the different accrediations for students to pass or to accomplish before they become teachers is important. At this point I would like to acknowledge there are down falls to this. However, one thing I noticed through all the standards is the focus on the good of others. Ultimately, the recognition that standards are need to help others is a deep concept. The hard part is deciding upon the standards which at the end of the day do help others. Understanding the knowledge, skills, and abilities need to be a good principal or leader is important but more importantly is understanding how to apply these on a daily basis.

This is what leads me to my question of what is the hardest part about your job? My answer is in agreement with Lieberman, Saxl, and Miles (2007) building colleagues is a complicated process. I am struggling with this at work with the colleagues I work with. So the suggestions given are good ones. The list of building trust & rapport, organizational diagonsis, dealing with the process, using resources, managing the work, and building skill and confidence in others is critical. The two I had not thought about before have given me a new insight at how to understand the organizational environment I am in. Understanding the culture and then being able to diagnois the action needed can be a critical component. It is about working with others to help with change.

This leads us to the second component I am continuely to reflect upon is the change process. This is dealing with conflict and mediation. Something I am realizing I am not good at because I do not like to cause tensions in relationships. The key is collaborative environments need to be created. By doing this then buy-in can be created with the people with whom you work.

I would love more thoughts about building relationships with colleagues.

Grace and peace,


5 domains of leadership education

Since I posted last week on the diversity paradigms, I thought I would reflect on the 5 domains of educational leadership: Leadership, Ethics, Policy, Research, and Diversity.

The lens at which each individual person views life is based on experience, environment, knowledge, and attitude (one's outlook in life). Now being in the educational leadership program I see the value in using the lens of the 5 domains to view how to conceptualize and practically apply the information being learned and synthesized. It is easy to get caught in a rut as Dr. Knoeppel pointed out and just think about the leadership paradigm.

It is nice to see how current and upcoming trends in policy play a vital role in how we view leadership, ethics, research, and diversity. Understanding how to be a leader by making moral and ethical decisions to conduct research by providing sufficient warrants and transparency to understand the world through different view points plays a critical role in my future endeavors and actual survival of the program.

One thing that speaks volumes to me is the idea of not just doing research for the sake of research. An ethical component is needed so that results are not falisfied or misconstrued in order for a researcher to be published or even finish a class in the doctoral program. We have to follow some morals and values in order to contribute to the collective understanding. The interesting thing about this comment is in the servant leadership theory and transformational leadership theory one of the foundations to creating positive relationships is making ethical and moral decisions.

So my challenge to myself is to make sure I continue down this path of approiate and ethicial decision making based on my personal beliefs as well as the institution in which I work.


learning time

Lately Lydda Grace and I have been having focused "learning time" each day. Today we were working on sizes with my set of colanders, big, medium, and small. I was trying to get Lydda Grace to nest them as we talked about the different sizes. This is what we ended up doing with them instead :)

a beautiful day for football

We finally had a non-rainy homegame here on Saturday! It was beautiful out and we had fun tailgating, hanging out and then watching the game.

This was her first time playing in a pile of leaves, very fun!
A student my dad golfs with stopped by and we couldn't resist a photo-op on his motorcycle!
This tailgating is hardcore, reserved parking spots and everything! Lydda Grace loved playing with the cones and walked in and around them for a long time.


Paradigms for Diversity

Banks (1996) states there are 3 different paradigms:

The discrimination and fairness paradigm (assimilation)--Most people from this paradigm are focues on justice and fairness, equal opportunity for everyone within the organization, and also is focues on laws around equal opportunity. Companies within this paradigm provide mentoring or developmental programs for minorities within their organization (Banks, 1996). Common characteristics in this paradigm is where the company uses a top-down approach with directives which implies structure to control processes. The one draw back I thought was interesting is someone from this paradigm might make the assumption everyone is the same because they think that will help decision making easier.

The access and legitimacy paradigm (differentation)--Organizations want to meke their companies diverse with people because it makes business sense. The company will then be able to reach different peoples and serve customers better which will in turn produce legitmacy to the organization. This paradigm has led to new professional and managerial opportunities for minorities. The main characteristic is increased diversity among consumers, slients, and the labor pool (Banks, 1996). The limitation to this paradigm is the tendency "to emphasize the role of cultural differences in a company without really analyzing those differences to see how they actually affet the work that is done" (p. 276).

The emerging paradigm (intergration)--There is a promotion of equal opportunity as well as acknowledging the value of differences among individuals. So almost a combintation of the above paradigms.

I believe the author writes about these paradigms to argue or convince the reader that everyone's opinion matters. The roles of each individual person are of value to the organization they serve. If organizations are able to listen to those that work for them, and empower the employees to make decisions then trust will be be built. And in return this trust will build the organization to grow but also the individuals of the organization to personally grow. This growth will probably look like individuals valuing one another and the organization.

These same concepts have arisen in the level 5 leader as well as the servant leadership theories (note: probably my two favorites).


happy Lydda Grace

I've had several people mention Lydda Grace's pitiful pictures on Monday and she truly has not been like that since Monday night so I thought I should post some updates to prove that she is indeed getting along fine and quite happy!
Getting some love from Gran Wednesday night after we tried to give Lydda Grace a bath and I still ended up getting her dressing wet (even using a plastic bag and duct tape to cover it!).
Thursday morning snack with a freshly wrapped hand courtesy of CVS and Mama.
Lydda Grace oooooooohhh'd her way through Hobby Lobby and all the Christmas decorations.
Notice the change of bandage. Apparently Mama was not meant to be in the medical profession because while in Hobbly Lobby Lydda Grace's entire little mitt came off. So we went back and had the nurse do it again and they tried a different way that gives her finger freedom. She did better this time at the doctor's office and cried horribly but didn't fight and wiggle as before.
We had lots of fun playing in the beautiful sunshine this afternoon! Lydda Grace did great walking around with only a few tumbles. She's getting to the point where she would rather walk than be in her stroller... interesting...


Lydda Grace update

Lydda Grace is doing great!! She has quickly adapted to just using her right-hand and gets around and plays and is getting into trouble just as much as before. It is truly amazing how quickly kids bounce back!

We were so blessed to get an appointment with the orthopedic this afternoon so we didn't have to take her back to the ER (praise the Lord!). The doctor said her finger looked "great" and is healing really well. She has another appointment in one week to change the dressing again and hopefully at that point she'll graduate to bandaids and neosporin. She should have a completely normal nail back in about a year.

Our new prayer request is that in one week that she would handle the dressing change better than she did today. As soon as they touched her hand today she started wailing and trying to get out of my arms. The doctor said it wasn't from pain but just from fear of having her hand messed with. Jon wasn't able to make it to the appointment today so my mom went with me and it really did take the two of us and the doctor and nurse to hold onto her to get the dressing changed. So sad!!!


poor baby girl!!

Yesterday evening was a rough one for us, Lydda Grace in particular. Her ring finger on her left hand got closed in the hinged part of the door. Jon rushed home and we went to urgent care where they told us she probably needed to be seen at the ER. We got to the ER close to 5pm and they were so gracious to take us back quickly. We were also blessed with a truly amazing doctor. Our little girl was a trooper!

Here're the gory details... so if you don't want to see this skip down to the pictures!!

Basically the base of her fingernail had been pulled out from under her cuticle, while the front part of her nail was still attached. Xrays revealed that a tiny chip was also fractured on the tip of her finger. They had to put her to sleep (which for me was almost the worst part of the whole thing) and the doctor reinserted the nail and sutured it back to her finger by burning 3 holes in the nail itself and sewing through her finger. The plan now is to follow up with an orthopedic who will monitor her little finger's recovery from here on out. We are praying that we get an appointment tomorrow (Wed.), otherwise we will have to go back to the ER for a dressing change and then again to the orthopedic later in the week...

Here's Lydda Grace with her bandaged hand eating a little something after the ER visit (this was about 9pm or so last night)
She looks so pitiful!!

Here she is today with her little "sock hand." Covering the bandage with a sock seems to keep her from picking at the dressing.

She looks like she's in pain in this picture, but she's actually been doing really well. And she crawled up into this chair on her own with her juice and I turned around to see her just lounging and enjoying her juice!

Thanks for your prayers for our sweet baby girl!!!