Wednesday, October 29, 2014

I'm So Flex.

It was a good day in first grade. Some students made a few bad choices and we all had to walk "around the block" after we came back from the restroom to prove that we know how to walk in the hallways properly, but for the most part we had a productive and fun day.

The morning was smooth, and I told the students after lunch that if they continued to do their best there would be a big surprise at the end of the day for them. Well they worked hard for it. Then, I had my own surprise.

It's a Title 1 school so resource folks, aides, volunteers, and behavioral specialists float in and out of the classrooms all day. At first they kind of threw me, but I've gotten used to them and they're obviously helpful. When we started math, Mr. Drew appeared, and after math he was still there. Why, oh, why is there always some guy in my room when I pull out the guitar at the end if the day? Seriously. Why?!

I'd met Mr. Drew a few weeks ago so it's not like he was a stranger. And I also knew I'd see him again at that school. So I kept waiting for him to leave. We packed up. I stalled with a story. Finally, I just had to bite the bullet.

I used my same introduction. "I brought a friend. She's from Canada. Where's Canada? It's above the US on the map. It's cold there so my friend likes it here. Her name is Genevieve. Would you like to meet her?"

I pulled out the case. The kids gasped and squealed; Mr. Drew made a remark I cannot recall but assume is the name of a Canadian guitar maker. Oh no. It's worse than I thought. He plays.

You know, I had a feeling. He seemed a bit hip(sterish) and looked like he had good taste in music. So I did what any beginning guitar player would do in this situation. I offered up the guitar and pick. "Oh I just usually play with my fingers." Yeah, I'm so not playing or singing in front of this guy. "Boys and girls, let's listen as Mr. Drew plays the guitar for us!"

Yep. Substitute teaching is all about flexibility.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014


Made it.

I was in the same second grade classroom yesterday and today. You'd think the second day would go better than the first, but that wasn't the case today. Though we all survived, it was an exhausting day for me. When I arrived home, I almost poured myself a glass of wine. Instead, I changed my clothes, laced up my shoes, went out the front door, and ran a mile even though it was 90 degrees. Because I know what's good for me.

Now I'm bracing myself for first grade tomorrow and kindergarten on Thursday. Oh, what was I thinking? I don't know, but now I think I should be more selective of my assignments for the sake of my own sanity. At least I have PE on Friday. Hopefully Halloween in PE is a lot more peaceful than leading a regular classroom. Then again, I could get eaten by a sixth grader. Please keep me in your thoughts.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Good Day Sunshine

My heart is happy. That is all.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Don't Touch That Dial

On the way home from GiGi's tonight, Brian was flipping radio stations. I hear, "I really wanna--," before Brian goes to the next channel. I gasped and exclaimed, "Did you just turn off George Harrison?" He smiled and flipped it back, but not before Elizabeth screamed, "Daddy!"

Even she knows that in my car there are certain artists so sacrosanct that we don't dare see if "something better" is on anywhere else. George and any Beatle are on that list. Who else? The Doors. Buddy Holly. Nirvana.

I never thought about it before, but I'm wondering if one must be deceased to make that list. Maybe, because even Paul doesn't stay on for long when a station plays some songs from his Wings days. Hmmm. Interesting.

But no. That's not it because Petty always stays. So does Led Zeppelin. And CCR. And the Police and Sting. And U2. All the good stuff stays, man.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Silver Lining

The good thing about desperately needing to go to the grocery store is that it's the perfect time to clean your refrigerator.

OK. I need to shop. Now!

Friday, October 24, 2014

New Reality

Matthew forgot to take his library books to school on Wednesday. On Thursday, he forgot to return his homework folder. Elizabeth forgot to do her homework assignment for girl scouts. Brian wisely mentioned today that he's running low on clean underwear instead of asking me when the heck I'm going to do laundry again. (Tomorrow.) As of this morning, we are out of bread, have about a cup and a half of milk in the fridge, no orange juice, and the only fresh fruit in our counter's fruit bowl are three overly ripe bananas.

Our family has some adjusting to do.

Becoming a working mom after staying home for eleven years is a big adjustment. For everyone. I'm stepping it up so everyone else has to, too. And there's no reason I should feel guilty about that. The kids are old enough to remember what they need to pack in their backpacks and what assignments they need to complete. I have to buy more groceries on my Sunday shopping trip. And maybe Brian should buy some extra underwear so we don't cut it so close. There's a learning curve, and we're all learning.

This was my first full week. I made it, yes, but I admit to feeling exhausted. My body's not used to moving at such a frantic pace all day long yet, and my peaceful alone time is a luxury of the past. Working moms everywhere are rolling their eyes and reminding me that I have a job I can leave at school when the bell rings, but even they have to admit that getting yourself and your kids ready for school is a daily challenge. It goes right along with coming home and fixing snacks for the kids, helping them with their homework, cleaning out our lunch box containers, making dinner, cleaning up, and making the lunches for the next day. And then you have to do the same things all over again four more days in a row. My weekend plans now are laundry and cleaning on Saturday and grocery shopping on Sunday.

It is our new reality and a big adjustment. We're finding our way. I know we'll eventually find it, and once we get there I might wonder how I stayed home for so long.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Another Guest Writer

Matthew brought home a writing assignment today in which he had to tell about when he acts like a beauty and when he acts like a beast. This is pretty good. His teacher says he has an excellent writing voice. "He writes it exactly like he'd say it to you." Indeed he does.

First, his girlfriend is his friend who is a girl. Second, he is never mean. Just sometimes. I love it. And I love him!