Monday, April 16, 2012

Not Done Yet

What's wrong with me?
Students and teachers
alike wonder.
I still want to teach.

Hello? Over here--
The light's still on.
don't close your books,
and pack your bags.
Quit looking at the clock.
Quit looking at the calendar.

I know we've taken "the test"
that concludes the year
for both young and old,
but not for me.

C'mon, let's
play with language,
explore themes.
Let's wonder and
have great discussions,
Let's explore our world.
I want to see
your lights turn on,
immersed in discourse
'cuz 'dis course is not over yet.

Wait, don't turn the light out.
Bear with me.
Despite all the signs--
removed or covered posters,
bubbling is done,
others have shut down
and spring fever is rampant.

Despite all you see around us,
we can't stop now,
I'm not teaching for a test.
I am teaching for life.
Please join me and learn with me,
side by side we are

We aren't done yet,
Nor will we ever be.
This journey never stops--
the journey of learning.

Monday, April 9, 2012

River Stone

Riverhouse Retreat 

(video trying to capture the sounds and beauty of  Fightingtown Creek, from the deck of the cabin where we stayed)

Riverhouse Retreat Writing Ideas from Spring Break Trip
  • River stones smoothed by time--like my rough edges smoothed over time
  • God's grandeur in nature
  • The gift of hearing
  • Peaceful chaos (the kids and dog)
  • Contrast last year to this year--last year storm left us without electricity
  • Hot tub time with kids/without kids
  • Electronics' free day (sneaking moments to check email)
  • Time to be
  • Hiking
  • Small town grocery shopping
  • Relaxed doggy rules (cuddling the dog in bed)
  • Cabin chotskys

River Stone

Bare feet in the cold river,
alternately sinking in mud,
then sliding across the stones. 
I bend over,
intrigued by the river stones.
The quest begins to find
my river stone.
A gray stone with rough edges smoothed over time,
the one smooth yet still jagged in several spots,
the patterned rock with the intricate designed webbing of black lines,
or the complex quartz of white, brown and gray,
another rounded and smooth yet suffering from a piece cut out long ago,
the pyrite, fool's gold, shimmering deception,
which one is my river stone?

River stones smoothed and weathered over time.
Not finding my perfect stone,
I hoard them in my pockets,
taking them all home with me.

In a jar on a shelf,
the stones dry out,
as do their shimmer, luster, and meaning,
and I am still searching for my river stone.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Finding Myself

Last week I wrote about being on a tightrope juggling all the many things in my life, and I realized, yes, I realized through that blog and many others last month that my mind and heart were burdened, burdened with too much to do and with not enough time or presence for my family.

With that in mind, I sent an email to my principals that for the sake of my family and my teaching and the burnout factor, they needed to make me say, "No more," to yearbook.

What I lose: 5 laptops, 2 desktops, 1 document camera, a nice little account to spend on things related to writing and technology, this iPad I am using right now, working with stellar writers to help them create and publish an amazing book that showcases the good stuff my school is all about.

What I gain: more family time, a happier husband (he picks up the kids, walks the dog, cooks dinner, does most of the cleaning--you get the picture), more peace, better teaching (more time to plan and grade at school), more sleep, my sanity), more time to write.

Don't get me wrong I am going to miss yearbook; however, I need to put my family first.

I think I will go back and revisit my poem about juggling. Life has given me new insight, as have my fellow
slicers. Thank you.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

I just don't know what to do with myself, but as always I'll stay busy and frantic in my mind that doesn't know how to stop...

  • The yearbook is done, except for the pages I want to have reopened because of minor editing and formatting errors.
  • I don't have to write on my blog, but I want to write and want to comment on other blogs some more. I am afraid I might lose my new community and that special sharing of humanity.
  • I don't have to do any schoolwork because I am on break, but I have piles of papers to grade. 
  • I don't want to play Draw Something or Words with Friends, but my devices keep buzzing their reminders.
  • I don't want to sweep the back deck, but the pollen keeps creeping in, and I am like Sisyphus with a broom.
  • I don't want to fold laundry, but I must follow the orders of the beeping dryer.
  • I don't want to cook dinner, but my husband is mowing, and I think I should.
I just want to be. I want to be quiet. I want to relax. I want to unwind. I want to stop all the ponderings of my mind and just take in the world around me, being present to the moment, being present to all the gifts God has given me...

Ahhhhh, the mountains are calling my name, and I will answer. Unfortunately, I will take the laptop with me, so I can open the pages as soon as the publisher opens them back for me and do a few minor adjustments. 

One of my days will be a day free of electronics. I read that on a slicer's blog, and I like that idea.  

Dinner to make...