Sunday, February 24, 2013

"Ain't Nothing Gonna Break My Stride!"

For those of you who know me or have listened to me ramble about running, you know that I'm a runner.  I ran track in high school all those years ago and in college revisited the whole running sport but I must say half-heartedly.  When I turned 42 my then 4th grader, my son with autism, hit a huge bump in the road.  I ended up quitting my job at the school, I worked as a supervisor and in-school sub, and tried desperately to figure out how I could best help him.  I knew that I couldn't work both outside and inside the home and embraced being "on call" to help him get through those tough times.  Needless to say, those were some of the most difficult for me, too.  I started searching for a way to minimize the stress and sadness I felt.  I started walking but realized that as the miles increased so too did the hours.  Then I thought, "...hey wait a minute...I used to run."  But for someone of my age, gotta laugh at that, I was pretty unsure.  Long story short I've been running for 11 years and find so many, many benefits to it.  I've had some high points in the runs too, getting some trophy's and medals in races and a few years ago completing my first 1/2 marathon.  The hard part has always been the Wisconsin winters as I don't like to run indoors.  I'm spoiled that way.  I like to put on a pair of shoes and some winter gear and get movin'.  Some how or other I, shall we say, fell off the wagon with my runs.  I haven't run since December...don't know why really.  Yes, I could say that life is so fast and hectic, that things at school have increased this year, that I am STILL and always will be a mom first, that my precious grandbaby helps me realize I need to spend some special time with her, etc. etc.  The point is I forgot about me, and I forgot about what creates a fire inside my soul, and what connects me with my God, and how creative I can be when I run.  So...long story short, I got out and ran yesterday and today and I'm a new person.  Running makes me look at things differently, gives me more energy that I would ever have thought, and reminds me of the pure joy I feel when I run.  Yes, it was difficult but not as bad as I would have thought.  I'm still in the semi-conditioned mode I guess.  It was a great day for self discovery and for the realization that I truly need to spend time by myself in my own "zone".  Without quiet, private, alone time with my God and my daddy angel, I can't be the person that I know I'm suppose to be.  Please take good time, friends, to remind yourself that in spite of our fabulous job of teaching others, and being a special person to others, you MUST find time to take care of you.  It is essential.  I continue to re-learn that!
Peace and love,

Monday, February 18, 2013

Reading Connections...So Important!

So here I am late much to do so little time, blah, blah.  I know I say it all the time.  Part of the reason for having little time is my CONSTANT need to create.  It makes me wonder what I'm gonna be when I grow up, haha.  I'm finding more and more that my "release", my "reward" for doing the work I need to get done is creating.  I'm wondering as I look back on my life whether or not I've always been that way.  I guess I have to say yes!  When my kiddos were littles I remember looking at dresses in the store for them and thinking...I could make that and if I did I'd do this..."  and change something to make it my own.  When I run sometimes I play the What Would I Do to That House Game.  Before running by each house  I have to make a change...what color would I paint the house, would I remove shrubs, would I put a bench outside...I guess you could say it's a way to think creatively and fast. 

So today after attending a 1/2 day teacher meeting instead of doing what I know I need to do I decided to create.  I wanted to make some fresh new posters for Reading Connections.  So here they are my friends.  Take a peek; be critical; tell me what I need to do to improve.  Just like the run by the house...quick...what would you change?  Thanks for taking a peek!  You're the best!
Love and Peace,

Saturday, February 16, 2013

So Much To Do (So Little Time)...

Where does the time go?  I remember those days when I was a little girl and had nothing to do all day.  I mean...nothing!  I could play with my brothers or my neighbor across the street but I remember being on my really super cool merry-go-round that my favorite grandpa made me and my brothers.  I'd go around and around on that thing for hours and hours, or so it seemed, dreaming, looking at the clouds, singing to myself.  It was indeed cherished times now that I look back.  I wish somehow I could have bottles those hours and put them in a bottle called Use When You're Old.  Then I could just grab a handful of hours and use them in todays crazy world.  Oh well...looking back, though, those are the moments I cherish most.  They were the simple times when I truly was a kid and truly sat and thought and dreamed.  Yes, I dreamed of being a teacher and being a wife and being a mommy.  My Lord was so good to me and gave me all three.

Speaking of children, a few years ago I came across a book called Mr. Lincoln's Whiskers.  It's the true story of a little girl named Grace Bedell who wrote to Mr. Lincoln about growing out whiskers to win the Presidential election.  Mr. Lincoln actually wrote her back, much to the laughter of her older brother who teased her and said that Mr. Lincoln was too busy to write her back.  He took her suggestion, growing whiskers, to heart and when his train came through Grace's town, after the election that won him the presidency, they met.  It was such a great story that I decided to write a friendly letter lesson using the Presidents of the United States.  My fabulous third graders drew president's names from my mystery hat and wrote letters to the president they chose.  Most of the presidents are no longer with us but I had them do research about their president and then write their friendly letter based on questions or comments they found out about each.  Check out my little old store for Dear Mr. President... and the book Mr. Lincoln's Whiskers for some great reading and writing. 
Love and Peace,