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We’re having problems having our videos seen on this website, so I wanted to provide the link to get to our video. Hope this works. Gosh, we are not photogenic!

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First Morning of Break

Life moves on. Days and weeks blend. Heck, as you get older, years blend. It’s already Thanksgiving break. I can’t believe how fast the time goes. I woke up this morning exactly two hours later than I wake up on school days which just reinforces my belief that 5:15 is and ungodly hour and my body will never, ever adjust. It’s a heck of a lot easier to get up after my husband takes our dogs out for their morning break/breath of fresh air and potty time. On school days, this is my job and let me tell you, cold mornings in the dark with snow seeping  into my Crocs are not my favorite. So I wait until I hear the front door open, then I stretch and rise out of bed. I love my morning coffee, and I have to admit that I love it more gazing out the window and then at my favorite fun book. I’m reading Emily Griffin now if anyone is wondering. I like to take my time. I think about my day; going to the gym, straightening up, getting laundry done, cooking, and NOT grading papers. My students run through my brain and I will end up telling about 5000 stories to the rolling eyes of my families and friends, but right now, I don’t want to think of them. I want to be me right now. The me that is a mother, wife, friend, daughter, sister, and aunt. The home me. During the school year this only really happens during long breaks or for short spurts of time for me. I can’t seem to separate the two roles very well. My brother is a coach and during the season he is consumed by the game and by his team. He tells me he often wakes up in the middle of the night to write down plays and to rethink games and practices. Nancy, my sister-in-law, knows this and respects his mental and physical absence knowing that it’s unavoidable yet temporary. It’s a little different for my family. Once August hits, I’m gone. I can’t seem to stop it and although I try, it’s impossible. My “job” is my life in a way. Don’t get me wrong, I adore my family and I am so thankful for them, but there is something about what I do for a living that won’t let me rest. I’m like a business tycoon in that I define myself by what I do. When I decided quit teaching a long time ago in order stay at home with my children, I knew I was where I had to be, but I lost a part of my identity that I didn’t retrieve until I went back to work. But it is Thanksgiving break! And let me tell you, I needed it. So for four and a half days I’m mom, wife, sister, daughter, friend, and aunt. I will relax and enjoy. I will eat too much, feel guilty, then exercise hoping to beat out the calories. I will laugh, hug, and love my family. I will lie in bed while my husband grudgingly takes the dogs out in the morning, and I will cook. I will be me. Happy Thanksgiving!!!!!

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As I arrived at school yesterday I witnessed two of our staff members wrestling a turkey down the steps to the cafeteria. Okay, the turkey was cooked and in a large roaster, but it was still comical. As Laurel and Hardy, oh I mean as JoAnn and Susie carried the “Thanksgiving Feast” for the kindergarten class down the stairs, it gave me easy ammunition for sarcastic remarks, but it also made me realize the dedication of so many of our staff members.

JoAnn bought the turkey, put it in the oven at midnight, got up at 3:00 am to check it, then she took it out, loaded it in her car, and lugged it into the building so the students and parents could have an authentic taste of a real roasted turkey at their celebration.

The whole school smelled wonderful as the aroma of the feast reached the upper school hallway. There was an additional energy that could be felt throughout the building, a feeling of excitement of the approaching holiday season.

It was a great way to end the week and when I need a quick laugh I just picture those two women and that turkey.


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Life is Not Fair

Lori and I are always talking about students, we can’t help it; their struggles plague our minds. We want to help them academically but sometimes you see a child who you can only do so much for and it is never, ever going to be enough, and it breaks your heart to acknowledge. Today is one of those days.

I was talking to another staff member today about a young girl who is not even in upper school yet. Her plight started at birth. She was born to a woman who was unable to handle being a mother, well a good mother. She became addicted, neglectful, and violent. Unfortunately, this young girl is also the oldest of the siblings. She witnessed abuse and was ultimately the one who received the brunt of the dysfunction.

Her father did get divorced and gained custody of the children. Although that is good, it is not enough. The father is overwhelmed and unable or unwilling to handle three children on his own. There is no healthy family member that helps him, so guess who does? Yes, that little girl who is already a sad semi-broken soul. She washes the clothes, makes food, wakes everyone up after an alarm gets her up, makes sure they all three get to the bus, and oversees all the things a loving mother (or father) should be doing.

How as educators or as humans do you live with this at night?

What are the options?

How can we make it better?

It haunts me and many of the good people I work with daily.

Is it enough to show those children love and security for the time they are in our school building? Honestly, I don’t think so.

What kind of future will these innocent children have? It sickens me.

So I guess my sleepless nights have much more to do with the lives of my students and less with the test results that are supposed to confirm to the world that I am a great teacher and prove that my students are “smart enough” never mind they may be in survival mode.

And we wonder why our world is so out of whack?

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Okay, I’m grumpy. What can I say? I don’t know the origin of the feeling, all I know is that the ride to and from work was fraught with grumpiness. Let me vent for a minute. For the kid’s sake, for Amy’s sake, and for my family’s sake, let me vent!!!

  1. I do not like complete darkness – not when I wake up, not when I leave for work, after work, and not when I’m running five thousand errands.
  2. Why must there be so many meetings??!! – For work, for my children – their volleyball, cheer, choir, p/t conferences, for everything!
  3. Why must I constantly be in a rush???
  4. Why must the kids talk incessantly, especially during spelling tests (Clue: I am making up sentences for the spelling words, I’m not making conversation starters!!!)
  5. Why does the only copier ALWAYS get jammed or run out of paper when I’m using it?????
  6. Why do students choose to say, “I don’t get it,” constantly????
  7. Why can’t anyone, including me, read directions all the way to the end?
  8. Why is Christmas coming so fast and so soon?
  9. Why does every school have a two hour delay but mine????
  10. Why, Why, Why!!!

I feel better. Thank you:)

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