Sunday, January 18, 2009

Four is my lucky number so...

... when I read this blog post over at Cornflower Blue Studio asking anyone to play along I decided I would go for it. The fourth photo in my fourth folder is this one
Since Ed died, I have so many pictures I had not seen in a long time. I am scanning them because I guess they are not really mine. I guess I will give them my mom or the subject (in this case my brother Matt). I feel so much love for him right now, just flooding feelings of appreciation and nostalgia and compassion.

He asked me a really interesting question after I tried to explain why I love teaching. I love teaching because I remember what it felt like to be a kid and so I am an advocate for them. I have my own personal reasons for why I loved school.
1. It wasn't home.
2. Nobody yelled at me.
3. Every day was pretty much the same.
4. The rules and consequences were clear.
5. I was good at "appearing to follow the rules."
6. There was food there.
7. If you needed a pencil or tape, it was always where you expected it to be.
8. A big part of the day was spent doing one of my favorite things in the world, reading.
9. The people there wanted me there. Or at least it seemed that way since they asked every day if I was there.

Are these good enough reasons to be a teacher? I don't know.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Have You Ever..........

I saw this at the fluffyknitting blog and thought it looked like a fun thing to play along with!

The things I've done are in bold.

1. Started my own blog
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band (orchestra, fife and drum corp)
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than I can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland/world
8. Climbed a mountain
10. Sung a solo
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched lightening at sea
14. Taught myself art from scratch
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown my own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train (a red eye from Boston to New York)
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitchhiked
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb (I wish!)
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice (lived in Venice, CA and rode gondola in Vegas)
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of my ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught myself a new language
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing (indoor)
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David
41. Sung karaoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had my portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had my picture in the newspaper
85. Read the entire Bible
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit (class action?)
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee
100. Rode an elephant (my mom did)

Monday, January 5, 2009

The Yorkie Connection

Twenty years ago in my very first teaching job, I had the best mentor ever. She was a dynamo and she guided me the same way she taught. T. helped me become the teacher I am by setting a great example, letting me make mistakes, and allowing me develop my own style. When a class begins, I still say "Let me see who I can thank for being on the ball?" as I look around a group of students in varying states of readiness. Even though these are sixth graders and those were first graders, everybody wants to be noticed for the positive and they all get ready. I have so much I wish I could tell her. Today I saw a postcard she sent school with her beautiful twin boys and her two Yorkies. She has Yorkies! I can't believe it. I have her address so I think I will write to her. I came home and googled her so for now here is a link to an article about her.

T. and her school for living graciously

Thelma T. Hanawalt's business, called 'Mrs. T-s Tutorials,' offers lessons on manners and academic subjects.
Amazingly, just last year when one of our former first graders Melissa C. became my assistant because of the brain injury, I found a copy of T.'s "Signs of Civility" and hung it on my wall. I really try to be a nice person.

Here is my Yorkie Lily with me at one of my favorite places in the world , discussing my art with the rest of my class.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

The Holiday Season

I hope your Christmas was better than mine. That year anyway, This year was fun. Check out my sister writing about my best New Year's Eve parties.
NYTimes blog
Coincidentally, they were her faves too. Amazing that they were able to beat out the year we went to Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins's party. I brought in the new year playing foosball against Tim Robbins' college roommate. Woo hoo!