One of the things that I look forward to when spending time in my hometown is doing nothing. No big plans, no excursions, just a whole lot of nothing.
My aunt and uncle, with whom I’m staying, have a big home which sits on a hill surrounded by fields and woods, and rolling hills. So spending the day hanging around the house is a treat for the eyes and ears, and oh, so restful. The other day we watched a wild turkey down by the woods, doing whatever turkeys do. My aunt and uncle have numerous bird feeders outside their huge windows, so I’ve listened to birds chirping beyond the dining room as watched hummingbirds flit around while lemon yellow goldfinches zip by, going from tree to feeder to tree again. I’ve eaten plates full of home-grown vegetables – green beans, lettuce, tomatoes, zucchini – along with locally grown corn on the cob. I’ve napped most afternoons with a cool breeze floating in from the window. Not. Too. Shabby.
A little of this and a little of that for a Thursday…
- It is hot in Florida. Very hot. And humid. I hate summers in Florida. But… we have air conditioning and no huge wild fires, so I’ll shut up now.
- While my summer school kids have been planning a “virtual vacation” in a project we’re doing, I have come to realize they think every state has a Disney World. I have one planning a trip to Washington, DC, and another planning a trip to NYC. Both kids put Disney World down as one of the attractions they want to see. Hmm…
- I am not too fond of the Fourth of July in Florida, either. See above bullet on heat and humidity. Add to that, fireworks that scare my dog silly, obnoxious revelers who light off fireworks for DAYS, and did I mention the heat?
- I saw Magic Mike today with a friend. Is it weird that at 53, I was one of the youngest women in the theater? Felt weird to me. And the movie itself? I knew it wouldn’t be an Oscar winner, but the storyline reminded me of something I might have written in high school in my journal – if I had been prone to write about male strippers. Which I wasn’t. Just for the record.
I truly planned to post this Thursday, but my head got in the way and a two-hour nap ensued. I’m okay with that.
My this and that for this week includes the following:
- more rain in 3 days than I’d like to see again for the next 3 months
- all the water sent ants into my kitchen in droves and a cockroach into my bedroom until his life was snuffed out by the woman who pays the rent around here.
- the sun has returned and the grass is already looking dry again.
- an alligator was spotted earlier this week crossing the street in the cross walk like a good, law-abiding citizen.
Just another week in sunny Florida.
Yesterday was a banner day for me, professionally and personally. The symphony trip with my students was delightful! This year, the conductor focused on melody, playing little snippets of pieces, including Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony and his Seventh Symphony. The kids recognized them immediately, because each school’s music teacher teaches the lessons that prepare them for this field trip. They learned about repetition in melody, along with scales as melodies, as in the Beatles’ Yesterday. I am particularly thrilled to hear my students talk knowledgeably about classical music, as they come from low-income families, whose parents have most likely not exposed them to this genre of music.
Now that would be the topper of the day for me usually, however yesterday each teacher at my school received an ipad and ipad training. While I have my opinions on how that money could have been spent more directly on students, I am not stupid enough to look a gift horse in the mouth. I now know just enough to frustrate myself. I did manage to download National Geographic Explorer magazine, and plan to go exploring myself to find other apps that can be utilized by my students in the classroom.
I’ve been toying with the idea of getting myself an ipad, so this will be a great opportunity to find out how and how much I will utilize it, as compared to my laptop.
If any of you have any favorite apps or a particular way you enjoy utilizing your ipad, I’d love to hear it!
Long time, no see.
I have gotten subtle reminders from my daughter that I need to write a post. Subtle being, “You need to write a post for your blog, Mom. Either blog. Just write a post.”
So here I am. This is the most exhausting part of the school year for me. We have Saturday School, state testing, report cards and report card conferences with every child’s parent, and planning for end of the year activities. So naturally, I’ve been migraining for weeks now.
Fortunately, Saturday School has ended, testing is more than half over, report cards are done, and so are most of my conferences. And I haven’t taken any migraine meds in over a week. Life is good again.
And I’d better get motivated. My grandson’s baptism is next Sunday. He’s four months old now – how fast the time has gone. Have I mentioned how much in love I am with this little person? Totally.
This has been a fairly unproductive week for me. My migraine started Sunday evening.
Monday was not great, but I crawled in bed at 6 pm and stayed there. Tuesday started better. I broke up a fight, rearranged my classroom (around my kids, who were working at their desks at the time – moving the rug from one side of the room to the other was a bit distracting, I’ll admit), and assigned 40+ students their book chapters to read for the next two weeks. I find when I’m migraining for days on end, I’d better get done all I can in the lulls between serious headaches. By the end of the day, my head really hurt and I crawled in bed around 6:30.
This morning I went to school long enough to know I couldn’t do it. I was there less than a half hour. That’s another drag about chronic migraine. Sometimes I can go weeks on end with nothing more than a mild ache or a sore neck. Then, in the space of a half hour I can descend into a full-blown I want to cut my eye out headache. It gets hard to plan sometimes.
Since I had no deck screws available, I went home and crawled into bed, where I’ve spent a lot of quality time this week.
Yesterday I headed out for Orlando after work with a tank full of gas and money for tolls, and I set my GPS to my daughter’s address. She had mentioned recently that I hadn’t seen her apartment yet and asked when I might visit.
Then I got myself invited to a workshop in Orlando that I wanted to attend. Perfect! I had dinner with child #3 and her roommate, I blogged while the daughter wrote a paper for class, and called it a night. Very nice way to spend an evening.
Tomorrow my brother and sister-in-law will be visiting for one quick night, and I can’t wait to see them! My sister-in-law had the amazing thoughtfulness to have family in the same two places my dad and I live, so they always visit us when in Florida! They have a three-day weekend, so it will be fast and furious, but I’ll take it!
Tonight, after driving two hours to get home from Orlando, I still have to steam clean carpets, finish the laundry, clean the bathrooms, and mop the floors.
So of course, I’m sitting here writing this post instead. Can you say avoidance? I gotta go!
Thursday came and Thursday went. I am presently visiting my 83 year old dad and oddly enough, he doesn’t feel the need to have Internet. Killjoy. So today I am at the closest wifi location I can get.
So here’s a little of this and a little of that.
My dad’s sweetie, Carolyn is 86 years old today. She still looks exquisite every day. Makeup, jewels, and impeccable taste in clothing. And as sweet and funny as the day is long. Happy birthday to our Carolyn!
My dad will be attending his 65th high school reunion this summer. I found some great air fares that he just couldn’t refuse. It’s also the bicentennial of our home town, so my daughter and I, along with Carolyn, will also fly up. My dad grumbled that half his class is no longer living. My eldest child pointed out that at this stage of the game, he should be looking at this as more of a glass-half-full situation. That made him laugh!
It feels like summer here in sunny Florida, but in reality it’s spring as evidenced by the tornado that touched down in Ft. Myers yesterday. According to the newpaper, Florida is the tornado capital of the U.S. However, Florida tornados are usually very short in duration and weak in strength. I’m okay with that.
I’m off to the pool soon and then out to dinner – Florida in March is awesome!
Random thoughts after a long Thursday…
If teachers didn’t have Spring Breaks, Christmas Breaks, Summer Vacations and assorted holidays, they would all go mad. All of us. I’m not kidding.
It is devastatingly sad to watch a child self-destruct, knowing that at age 11, it is probably too late to save him.
Chocolate doesn’t even taste as good as usual when you’re eating it purely out of stress.
I love teaching. I hate politics. Therefore, I have a love-hate relationship with the teaching profession.
At the age of 52, I long for the days when Mom and Dad would tuck me in at night with a kiss on the forehead.
Have you ever seen lists on blogs that no human has time to read? “57 Tips for a Healthier You”, “67 Decorating Ideas for Your Bathroom”, “100 Ways to Live Simply”…
But bear with me. I’m in the honeymoon phase with my new class and I want to savor it while it lasts.
THE TOP TEN THINGS I LIKE ABOUT MY NEW CLASS:
1. I keep hearing thank you from students when I pass out paper or markers or whatever.
2. The two students I’ve had to speak to about their behavior have been remorseful and apologetic, which means they have good hearts.
3. My two new students (why start the first day?) have been welcomed and shown the ropes by their classmates.
4. I’ve seen some of the neatest handwriting to cross my desk in years.
5. They get my jokes.
6. They sat silently reading – really reading, not fake reading – for 13 minutes before any of them even twitched.
7. They want to know when they can start going to the library to check out books.
8. The student I blogged about last spring, who is notorious for not doing any work, got his math done today and completed his writing homework last night. I gave him an “atta boy” and I got him to smile at me! I told him I’d been bragging about him to everyone.
9. Even though there are 23 students, they can and do work much, much more quietly than last year’s group of 18. God bless them.
10. I was told today that they thought I was 32, not 52. They were all surprised at my age.
Yep. They’re keepers. I’ll let you know in January if I feel the same way!