The Party’s Over?

It is admittedly a rather strange title for one who does not gallivant about doing pub crawls. My summer vacation time is drawing to a close a bit sooner than I had originally planned. With my new responsibility as an academic team leader, I have a two day workshop to attend beginning Thursday. I have a short 90 minute workshop to attend on Monday. I have to prepare my classroom for my new students who will see it two weeks from today during our orientation. Now I know why I am awake in the middle of the night. Planning for the next step. Preparing to take on new challenges and changes. The party is over.



Are You Frustrated With Life? Keep Reading.

Life is not fair. Innocent individuals lose their lives. Unstable individuals take matters of revenge into their own hands with deadly results. I have a few suggestions when life is too frustrating.
1. Pray for guidance. Consult the Scripture. Talk to your clergy person afterwards.

2. There are twenty-four hour gyms with bags that can be punched until the anger abates. Still mad? Run. Still mad? Keep running. Run a marathon. Run an ultramarathon. 

3. Go feed ducks some day old bread. 

4. Call that one person who says, “Even if it is 3:15 A.M., call me. Give me a minute to wake up, but I will listen.” 

5. Write a letter/journal about your feelings and frustrations. Even if you never publish or send it.

6. Sometimes a nap really does help.

7. Drink a cup of hot tea or coffee sweetened the way you prefer.

8. Play some music that makes you dance like a maniac like you were when you were 19 and carefree.

9. Visit the zoo and walk around it until your feet want to fall off. Drag your tired body home, take a soothing not bath,  and rest with your feet elevated.

10. Stay off social media until you are calm and rational. There is no need to further pollute the Web with more vitriolic vocabulary.

My heart goes out to the families of the police officers who were murdered in downtown Dallas as they protected the people who were protesting. 



I’m Too Fabulous for My Own Good

Maybe I should title this one “Everyone Wants My Autograph” instead. Nah. Living near my campus is a double-edged sword. I am nearby if I need to come home when ill or must make some type of unexpected wardrobe adjustment. Bonus! When I walk the neighborhoods of my subdivision, I keep an eagle eye for vehicles and the rare loose dog. Earbuds do not grace my ears on my normal morning walks. You would think I would maintain my standard.

I wish I was not so fabulous and well-known and such a celebrity. I went to the track near my home to walk this morning. A trio of high school aged young men were training with sprints and then began running the track. They were in their zone; I was in my zone. I had my praise and sacred songs playlist in my earbuds. Only once did I disturb their exercise time by singing out loud. As I realized they were running right by me, my mouth snapped shut. We were cool.

As I completed my sixth or seventh lap around the flat human hamster wheel, I sensed a presence. Unbeknownst to me, a former sixth grader had spotted me and came up to me while I was walking. Apparently my disguise of over-sized t-shirt, hair pulled up in a mess up-do, and shades failed to shield me from my public. Running Man was not one of my charges. He did not seem to understand me when I said, “Walk down the hallways” during the school year but regarded me in an open-mouthed and glassy-eyed manner.

This previous interaction had not endeared Running Man to me, but when he arrived in my classroom for standardized testing day, that was fine. When he tried to sleep on both days, I won the battle of wills and consciousness. At the end of testing, I shed no tears to see him depart. I bid him and the rest of my charges adieu and went on my way minding my own business.

Today, my earbuds kept me ignorant of my name being called. I did not know of his presence until Running Man nearly touched my arm. He had actually nearly breached my personal space. We made eye contact. I quipped, “I’m doing something right now.” I continued my walk down the last straightaway of the track and walked home with a circuitous route checking over my shoulder in the event that I was followed.

The moral of this story: don’t wear earbuds on the track.



A Bit of Work to Do

Earlier this week, I received notification reminding me that I ha13083242_1170813406264599_1602000589678556257_nve to complete four hours of online compliance training before school starts. It means sitting at the computer and paying attention while reviewing information about blood-borne pathogens, regulations with Section 504, and the like. The class opened yesterday, but I have only glanced at the titles and not delved into the meat and potatoes of the work. I am thinking that the sooner I accomplish the task, the more I will savor my remaining weeks (woot!) of vacation.




The End/A New Beginning

I finished my last portion of my language arts obligation with curriculum writing. It was a little bittersweet because the ladies and gentleman on my team were a great deal of fun. I enjoyed teaching English Language Arts for the past twelve years. I still like the subject matter; however, I am embracing another part of my makeup: the history major. I see myself giving my students bits of history even more often than I did in the past. I love telling the stories of how things happen as much as I love reading about those events. I am as giddy as a school girl preparing for the first day of school all over again. I am taking a few days to chill at home before tackling my new curriculum. I have a workshop next week, so I will hit the books before then. The idea of three or four unstructured days appeals to me on an emotional level. I need the time off to recharge, refresh, and rejoice. My garden needs my time. My friends need my ears and undivided attention. My family needs my creative talents in the kitchen. My soul needs my daily walks and/or runs as the weather permits.

I will share my insights about my new adventure as it progresses. Later, gators.


I Could Not Resist

I just had to share this one. I saw it on Facebook a couple of weeks ago, and I have not been able to stop snickering whenever I have stumbled across it in my photos.

Moms and dads are the first teachers each child knows. I am merely meant to complement their efforts, not compete with them. Tag, you’re “it!”


Some Good Ideas for Twitter

As you may know, I maintain a Twitter account linked to this blog. I am a subscriber of Edublogs for my classroom blog account. They make it look superb with my input, and I recommend them. I will make a print out of the infographic and post it in my classroom for my digital learners’ use.

26 Effective Ways to Use Twitter


New Digs

Today I spent five hours working on throwing out my unnecessary items from language arts and moving my personal belongings to my new classroom. At the end, I was tired and began putting things in higgledy-piggledy and snapping pictures for future remembrance.


Teacher Stats

Teacher Stats:

21 years
1800+ students
5 schools
8 classrooms
3 grade levels
4 different class subjects
5 principals
4 certifications
0 Masters degree
1 club sponsored
2 sports coached (assistant)
0 maternity leaves
3 student teachers

What are your teaching stats?

I saw this on Facebook and decided to play along. When seen from a historical perspective, it boggles the mind about one’s accomplishments. I tend to downplay achievements, yet I know that I have been completing my mission one year at a time. As one former major league pitcher said, “It ain’t bragging if you done it.”


The End of an Era

The title could refer to any number of changes that will occur in the near future for me. Let’s start with the professional level, shall we? Next year I will be returning to my first teaching discipline. I will be teaching sixth grade world cultures. This is an opportunity to really showcase my passion for history and geography and to try to instill a life lesson or two along the way by teaching about the peoples of the world and their ways of life. This opportunity presented itself when my current social studies colleague on my academic team took another position as a digital learning coach at two middle schools. When Bryan told me about his new position two weeks ago, I cried. I have enjoyed working with this young man who is a fellow believer. He hails from North Carolina and has a wonderful sense of humor. I was and am happy for him; I will miss him but wish him great success in this undertaking. Later that week, his teaching partner asked me if I would consider switching from language arts to social studies. Without missing a beat, I readily agreed. Lisa and I have wanted to work together in past years, yet we were never on the same academic team. She is one of the reasons why I am at my current campus. I approached my principal, and last week, my principal said yes. I have begun moving my personal items to my new classroom without taking over the decorating. I told my department about my change, and I will be getting my room cleared early next week. I will have new curriculum to absorb once I fulfill my duties as a first-time curriculum writer late next week.

The other major change will take place on Saturday when my only child, my son graduates from high school. When he tried on his cap and gown officially on Monday, my eyes watered. “It fits” was all I could manage to utter. Where the future will take my son I do not know; however, I do know that he has been taught right from wrong. I know that he knows he is loved, valued, and cherished. We have laughed at stupid inside jokes only the two of us get. He does not mind when I grab him and hug him for no good reason other than just to hug my son. Mornings are complete with him at the breakfast table reading his Bible with the blinds open for more sun. We have joked about the amount of protein “demanded” by his weightlifting coach. I have peered over his shoulder and marveled at his writing ability that has been honed and sharpened by his excellent English teachers, present company excluded. He loves reading ,history,music (country & western and jazz), exercise, and the outdoors. He plays tenor saxophone and knows to play “Naima” by John Coltrane when I am in a blue funk. That stupid brick I tried to put on his head failed to keep him smaller and halt the steps of time. Slow down just a bit more.



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