There is a magic with new beginnings- large or small… Don’t you agree. Something about the freshness of it all. This Monday I am reminded of that, especially this time of year. Mini Me and I are about to start our first ever summer together- with me home and not working. People… I have worked EVERY summer since I was 15. I know hard to believe… I’m a teacher (was a school administrator as well) – we “have summers off”. After over 15 years in the business- this is the FIRST summer I will not be working full time. I do have that pesky 2 week required training over the summer.
This new beginning brings lots of excitement.
Back in January/February Mini Me picked out 8 different themes he wanted to learn about. We have worked together, planned, and collected items along these themes. We will have plenty of pool, relaxing, and rest time – but I am excited to put some energy into planning his learning.
I have developed a “summer schedule”- I learned quickly through winter break and snow days- this helps us – this saves us actually. Now- if life happens, feelings happen – we change our schedule. But it is a good foundation for us. I have shared our version and blank version here for your enjoyment. Summer Resources Click Here. I will share our weekly theme resources/activities throughout the summer as well.
Mini Me’s Summer Learning Picks:
- Week 1- Whales
- Week 2- Safari
- Week 3- Dinosaurs
- Week 4- Butterflies
- Week 5- Weather/Storms
- Week 6- Elephants
- Week 7- Rocks and Minerals
- Week 8- Sharks
Share with me in the comments- any tips or stories about surviving the summer with your children.
This week starts Teacher Appreciation Week. In NC we are also gearing up to May 16- for the March for Students and Rally for Respect.
I have been in the education field for almost 16 years now. I have worked mainly at high at-risk schools – in both the classroom and as an assistant principal. Very different experiences in those roles- but all worth the tears, heartache, joy, and love for every student and family that crossed my path. I took home each night the joys, smiles, and heartaches of many of my students… because every child is in need of an adult who will try to understand them, never give up on them, and insists they become the best they can be.
I was (am) lucky. I grew up in a home with 2 loving supportive parents, surrounded by supporting extended family and lots of family friends… who honestly are family too. As a family we had challenges, as a kid I had challenges- and let’s face it a good number of days- I probably was the challenge. Sometimes I was guided out of the challenge and sometimes I was left to learn from the challenge. Most days I feel my past, present, and future prepared/prepare me to, just maybe, guide and/or support some of the parents, students and the challenges that face them daily. I have seen so many of these situations recently. To be honest- my head and heart are exhausted. It is teacher appreciation week — as I attempt to process just some of what I have experienced lately- I reflect on the fact that I only get a small, tiny, minuscule amount compared to all the teachers that work with many students day in and day out. They work to reach every student in every capacity- academic, emotionally, and socially. I am so very blessed throughout the years to have crossed the paths of so many passionate individuals who CHOOSE to take that daily challenge everyday with a SMILE (an quite often silent tears). It might be teacher appreciation week – and even though students don’t always have the words- your daily choice to show up, slap the floor, and give it your all is quietly appreciated by many all year long. And as we approach summer- what many will miss day in and day out. I continue to be inspired by teachers, superheros I am surrounded by and so dedicated and talented.
Throughout these years in education I have also worked various second jobs- more commonly developing websites, education resources, and workplace training. I could have left education easily and had less stress, less heartache, and most definitely less working number of hours working per week. I would be lying if I didn’t share that I have had that thought over the years. But…God could have given me strength, courage, and support to leave- But God said I am giving you something better than the strength and courage to go – you are so important to me I am giving you the grace and grit to stay…he has a reason. Somedays I don’t know what the reason is, somedays I see it loud and clear.
#SoBlessed #Inspired #TeachersAreSUPERHEROS #ItsPersonal #Red4ED #GraceandGrit
I found myself at a turning, strike that, breaking point – attempting to balance being a wife, mother, and educator. I was still am exhausted. So, why add one more thing you ask? I asked the same thing a couple years ago and decided to scrap it. It felt good… for a hot minute.
I work at being a prayer warrior and kept praying about the voices, nudging back toward this blog thing. My prayers were always general. And about a year ago, for the first time in 5 years, I found myself sitting at work completely paralyzed. I couldn’t function and went home. I was paralyzed by my emotions- I couldn’t keep going. I cried all the way home – I was broken. I wasn’t a wonderful wife, marvelous mother, or sensational school administrator. I was doing just enough to get by, I was distant with my family and colleagues. Now, this wasn’t something that just happened that day. I finally exceeded my limit and broke … broke down. I got home and crawled into bed hoping to never have to leave. About four hours later, my mini me came running into the house screaming “mommy mommy your home.” In that moment my heart smiled and I began to pick up the pieces. I prayed… I finally was real with myself and prayed more specifically. I lifted my worries and “calendar” to the good Lord and was honest that I couldn’t figure it out anymore and needed him too walk me through it. No lie within a couple of weeks I had a different job opportunity that would allow me more time with my family, the load of work responsibilities were realistic to accomplish within reasonable hours, and the emotional stress that came along with being an assistant principal at an at-risk school would diminish. I was not naive in that this would solve all balance issues immediately. But it was a start on the road of recovery, so to speak.
I am still picking up the pieces and have a long ways to go. I am still trying to figure out who I am without a 70 hour a week job (on a good week). I am still figuring out our balance at home, now that I am actually present. I am still working on getting over the guilt of all that time and emotional energy that was not directed at my husband or kids. I am still working on my health and not resenting the work I have to put into managing my Type 1 diabetes. I need to make a priority of working on my physical confidence. I feel the basic balance of work and family has greatly improved with the new job- but the basic balancing of time is just the beginning. I hope that this blog will document my journey and life lessons on being a wife, mother, and now a HS teacher. I hope to connect to other flawed working parents and education professionals so that we can share laughter, tears, and maybe a lesson or two that make us perfectly flawed.
To learn more about my “makings” go here.
Wasn’t sure where blogging fit anymore and took over a year off. To be honest I wasn’t sure I had what was needed to keep this up or wanted to keep up. In the time away… I kept getting tugged back to sprucing the place up and to try again. I have spent the last several months prepping, writing, tweaking, reflecting and brainstorming. I will be back in May 2018 with bi weekly postings. I can’t wait to see what this crazy, over flawed, perfect life brings in later this year…. hope you will come along for the ride.