Friday, January 3, 2014


The temperature is currently hovering somewhere around freezing, and in two days the low will get into single digits and we might get some snow! This born and bred desert girl is loving this weather. We have not travelled for any breaks this school year so far, so fall felt like fall, Thanksgiving felt like chilly November weather surrounded by colourful leaves, and Christmas felt like Christmas. There was also the crazy cold snap of early December when my parents were visiting and the car heater was broken. Nothing like a string of windy cold days to make you suddenly feel warm in 50 degree weather. And thankful for the sun. I don't think I've ever been thankful for the sun.
     I have also purchased cold weather pants for running and a really cool looking cold-weather jacket, complete with ceramic thread to hold in body heat- which is on its (non-drone-delivered) way from amazon. At least I will look the part of a cold-weather jogger. Actually, I have been running more lately, with sentences like this coming out of my mouth: "my lungs only burn for the first mile" "after three miles, I was actually hot" and "the good thing about the cold is it makes your face go numb and then you're fine". 
        Lest you think I am some sort of winter Olympian, let me confess I have spent the better part of this break on the couch in the den, covered in quilts, blankets, a hat and slippers and the space heater when spencer will let me have it. We live in a 70-year-old house, a house with a crawl-space and poor insulation. Not such a treat in winter. I am actually starting to get sick of sitting, but it's been nice to do close to nothing for two weeks. And until yesterday, i didn't check my work email or do anything school related. That was a milestone to hit. The last two Christmas breaks have been mostly me planning for January, which is not relaxing at all. This year, because I work with the fantastic Hayley Moore, we coplanned a writing unit and even made copies for the first week back so that we'd do nothing over break. This year has had several things that made me think, "Ok, I can teach as a career. This is manageable." I am excited for this spring semester: Our writing unit, then Anne Frank/Number the Stars and a propaganda unit, then a research project based on the book Flesh and Blood So Cheap which is about laborers around the world. Hayley and I even get to co-lead an mtr graduate workshop in March, which feels insane since we are only second year teachers. I miss my kids and have wondered several times over break what they are up to. This group of kids is so sweet and great, I am really sad that I am halfway done with them. 
     That reminds me- about a week ago I had a dream that it was the first day of school next year and the kids were being so unruly. We were outside walking into the classrooms and they were climbing fences to try and escape. I was yelling for Austin, my coworker who teaches math to my kids, to grab them and I remember seeing the rest of my 8th grade team all frazzled as well. Then I saw kids from last year- not this year, but last year which nearly killed me- and I was SO HAPPY because in comparison they were angels. I hugged them and told them how great they were. I am not really dreading next year, I think maybe my brain just loves these current kids so much that I don't want my time to go too fast with them. I'm sure I will love next year's kids as much, because last year I thought I couldn't love this year's kids nearly as much as my first year. But I have to say, I do. And as a whole, they are more of a joy to work with and be around because they are so kind, hard-working and more respectful on the whole than last year's kids.
       This post is long and rambling now. Kind of like my internet perusals of late. I wanted to write about New Year's resolutions, because I am an incurable goal-setter and I like the idea of fresh starts. I actually test-drove my resolutions in December to see how realistic they were. What I've decided to do is to ADD things that I want to do or have be patterns without taking anything away (yet) or trying to just stop doing or start doing something drastic. So, my goals are: read my Bible and pray each day, do something active every day (could be cleaning or a walk around the neighborhood), drink 8 glasses of water, get 8 hours of sleep (this one will be tough when school starts again since I get up at 5:20), and eat 7 servings of fruit and veggies a day. That last one is really hard. I feel like I am a pretty healthy eater, but I really don't eat enough fruits and veggies. And I am trying to find more things for school lunch that are in that category and that I can make ahead. So far, I am doing pretty well. The other part of this year's resolution idea was to not say that I will do 100% every day. Of course not. But to aim for that, so that in a year, these things are more patterns and habits than they are right now. 
      What about you? Do you make New Year's resolutions? Are you avidly against them because no one keeps them? What do you wish were more of a pattern in your life?

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