Wednesday, May 31, 2017

May Bee 31

Maybe, even though I pretty much sucked at the May Bee Challenge, May has been my most prolific month on the blog this year.

Maybe I'm having a bad year?

Probably, but maybe I should compromise, forgive, and move on. After all, this year is just getting started! Not even half over! There's plenty of time to be more excellent. Maybe the person being more excellent will be the very person who's writing this blog.

Stranger things have happened.

I read the agenda for tomorrow's end-of-year faculty meeting, and it's starting with an "extended gratitude exercise." I'm going to start right now by saying I'm grateful for the May Bee Challenge, which actually inspired me to post some half-assed anecdotes on my website.

Thanks, Lee! And Mary! And Mel!

Let's all just keep writing.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

May Bee 30

Maybe the end of the school year is like falling off a horse. This metaphor came to me as my friend Erin described being hurtled over the head of her horse a couple of years ago. She'd been going at a full run on a horse called Sparkle, a prospect I can now attest would be terrifying. I know it would be terrifying because I trotted on some horses this weekend with Erin as my supervisor.

Trotting is fast enough.

Anyway, when Erin fell off the horse, sailing over its head in death-defying fashion, Sparkle had suddenly stopped short.

When school ends, you're similarly going at full speed. Writing report card comments, grading, cleaning your room, cobbling together thank you notes, basically holding on for dear life. Then school stops, and your body goes hurtling forward with nothing to check it. You land in a heap, possibly broken and bleeding.

That hurtle is coming. I'm trying to put some foam pads in place. Soft landing. You know.

Friday, May 26, 2017

May Bee 26

Maybe I'm back in the saddle for the last few days of the month. Last night, we had Humanities Family Night, so that's over.

Basically, 300+ people packed into a small space to view projects about various global issues. There was also a short presentation in the theater with an adorable script that students read to explain the process by which they'd created these things. There were folders with research materials and creative writing. They made art projects.

We made a slideshow with music.

And now that that's over, I'm really on a downward slide. I've got some grading and some report card comments, but whatever. I no longer have an event for 300+ people. I will not discover moments before the event that my pants have a weird stain on them. 

We can do this.

Friday, May 19, 2017

May Bee 19

Maybe Shef and I are fighting over a book. The book is called Running with the Buffaloes. It's by Chrs Lear, and it chronicles the 1998 Colorado University cross country season.

The book is technically Shef's, as it was given to him as a gift by his godmother. But, I want to read it, too.

Sometimes I just read it to him, but last night, I had to go to bed earlier. I took the book from his room and read it until the words got all swimmy on the page in front of me. To be helpful to Shef, I put it on Dan's nightstand by the door, so he could find it.

Sure enough, it was gone in the morning.

Maybe we're good sharers. Just two runners liking the same book.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

May Bee 17

Maybe my dog has an extraordinarily delicate constitution, or maybe he's just really dumb.

Or both.

It's true: we're once again in the throes of a bout of explosive diarrhea. And, I just can't even.

Did he eat rabbit poop? Some kind of poisonous plant? A bone from the compost bin? I don't know.

What I do know is that the dog is just over two years old and has had maybe 15 rounds of the worst, most disgusting gastrointestinal problems.

We've narrowly avoided surgery twice because of non-food items ingested. I've spent hours scrubbing excrement.

I'm starting to question my efficacy as a dog owner. Maybe it's just not worth it.

Monday, May 15, 2017

May Bee 15

Maybe something is better than nothing. That's been my rallying cry. It started last week, and I'm continuing it on. I actually don't think this is a Maybe. It's a For Sure, and the truism applies to most everything:

  • A little work is better than no work.
  • A little exercise is better than total slovenliness.
  • A little reading is better than no reading.
  • A few May Bee blog challenge posts are better than zero May Bee blog challenge posts.
And so on. 

I've been marching forward, doing something, rather than nothing. I wrote my end-of-year reflection for instance, but I did that whole thing - not just a little bit of it. I sent out a newsletter to sixth-grade parents. Again, I really did the whole thing there. 

I guess what I'm saying is, you can do the other, non-job and time-sensitive things a little bit while you really focus on your have-tos.

This week, I'm going to do some grading, some exercising, some healthy eating, some goal-setting and intentionality. I'm going to start right now.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

May Bee 9

Maybe I can make it through the year. Maybe not. It's touch and go, but as far as I can figure it, I have little choice but to try.

What's happened is not that I dislike my work. Far from it! It's just that I've made the critical error of improper pacing. A school year is rather like a marathon. If you shoot off the starting line at too quick a clip, either because you're excited or because circumstances require you to play the rabbit, you're in for a hell of a last 10k.

I knew it would be this way (Dan says it's like this every year), but I decided to start the race; and now it's my duty to finish it.

I've adopted a one-word mantra to get me through the week, and it's this: "Maintain." Just do everything the same way I was doing it before.

I've got this.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

May Bee 6

Maybe I should sue.

I ordered some replacement probiotics, and the bottle was broken when it arrived, an oblong shape protruding from its shoulder. When I tried to open it up, I accidentally cut my ring finger on the broken part. It's a weird, flappy cut right next to the nail. It bled a lot, and now I have to keep replacing the band-aid there, as it comes loose when I wash my hands, which I do quite frequently.

Annoying! I feel I should be compensated for my injury and inconvenience. Maybe a free bottle of probiotics? The things aren't cheap, and now I have to store the whole load of them in a plastic bag, rather than taking advantage of the special storage system with the dark colored glass/plastic that they bragged about on the label.

Maybe I'll email the company and ask. Or, maybe it's not really worth it.

Friday, May 5, 2017

May Bee 5

Maybe I should adjust my new rule about school night commitments just for the awesomest things. Remember how I finally decided after 18 years in the teaching profession that I would no longer accept weeknight invitations during the months of Septemeber, October, January, February, or May? That's a really smart and self-preserving policy, based on my work experience.

However, if I had already enacted the policy this year, I would have missed something really cool.

Last night was May 4th, and I went to a storytelling event called "Listen to Your Mother." My friend Emily had attended several times, and she said I'd love it. What happens is people from the community audition, and then they tell their stories related to mothering in front of an audience.  Some of the stories were hilarious, and some were pretty sad. Some people talked about being moms, and other people talked about their own moms and mom figures.

The whole thing was really warm and community-building, and afterwards at the wine bar across the street, everyone was talking and making friends. I struck up several conversations in the long bathroom lines. "We should all audition for this next year," my friends and I decided.

And I kind of thought, well, maybe I'll start my own storytelling circle. Today's stories are going to be about teaching. Come on! Today's stories are about sports! Today it's about fear! You get the idea. I think I could find enough people to fill a room. Stories bring people together. Maybe we should write them and tell them.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

May Bee 3

Maybe I'm not done with running.

I haven't been running for the same reason I haven't done much of anything. It's because I'm working on the book project. But, sometimes, it's nice to be in a little bit better shape; so I've recently added running back to the to-do list.

I'm keeping the goals really reasonable. Basically, I just make myself do one weeknight workout and then two weekend workouts. That brings the total to three, which seems like a big accomplishment.

I'm feeling good about it. Feeling a little stronger. I'm not going to sign up for any races or anything like that. Gonna keep my eyes on the book prize and run a little bit sometimes for health reasons. Maybe throw in some squats and a couple of plank poses. Basics.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

May Bee 2

Maybe I won't give up on the blog.

I've been tempted. And, I've thought to myself, "It's been a good 13 years." Which is true. But, still, giving up on the blog is probably not the right thing to do. If I gave up on the blog, where would I store memories like the one that happened last week?

Luckily, for now, since I haven't given up on the blog, I can store it right here:

The story is that my car had to get fixed. It was going to be wicked expensive, but then I discovered I'd purchased a warranty. All it took to activate the warranty was six or seven calls from my attorney husband to the warranty company. The last call was a little heated, but he got the job done.

In the end, the warranty company paid $2000 for the water pump repair, which is apparently part of the powertrain.  I only had to pay $324 for some wiring issue, which was, sadly, not part of said powertrain.

Anyway, in all the hullaballoo, I got a loaner vehicle, a totally serviceable Ford Fusion, and I drove it for two days. Mac thought it was the fanciest car in the whole world. "Whoa," he said, on sliding into the back seat of the four-door, "this is a NICE car."

Shef and I exchanged glances and said things like, "Well, it's a Ford Fusion."

But Mac was undeterred. "No, I LOVE this car," he said, stroking the faux leather seats. "This is a sports car," he told us.

"It's a sedan," I agreed. No use fighting with him. I whacked at Shef when he opened his mouth to tell him that a Ford Fusion sedan was emphatically not a sports car. "Do you like riding in a sedan rather than a minivan or SUV?" I asked.

Turns out the answer is yes. Maybe we'll get a sedan next. Seems to make the kid happy, even if it doesn't totally fit the hockey equipment.

So, maybe the blog isn't dead.

Have you heard of the May Bee Challenge? It's on.