Summer is coming to a close here. We have had a pretty calm and quiet time with everyone (for once) on vacation at the same time. Our main events included a very pleasant visit from my mother in July. In August, we spent a few days as a family in the Netherlands for a change of scene. I hear you. You are only repeating what my children said. The Netherlands? Really? Continue reading →
I have results! I have even taken my own pictures. I had expected the runner beans to be my winner in the growing contest, but at the moment it’s the poppies that have me daily checking their progress.
We’ve had extreme heat in our area recently, so I’ve been watering my little pots every day. I may have given the poppies too much because the leaves have yellowed, but there are flowers!
The other day, in a rare fit of green thumb disease, I bought a package of oregano seeds and another of poppy. I think I was inspired by the growing experiments we have been doing at school with my first graders. Their runner beans were running amok and we had to send them home. I missed inspecting the jungle each morning. So I bought my own seeds.
My daughter made a flying visit home in between seeing friends and returning to school. We took advantage to have an Easter ‘Grampa Special Breakfast’ with her (so named because my dad used to make a big brunchy breakfast at least once when we were in town. Mom, of course, did all the other meals. She is known for making the Best Spaghetti Ever.).
It had rained all morning but by the time breakfast was over and dishes were washed, the skies had cleared. Daughter and I put on coats (and scarves) and went on an expedition to search for signs of bluebells. Continue reading →
I don’t know what it is like where you live, but today we are having a delicious taste of spring. I have to write quickly because I don’t know how long it will last. However, just now it is sunny and warm. People are outside. Most are in t-shirts, or like me, in layers that are soon shed. Color is everywhere. Yellow! Purple! Green!
I admit that I have been in denial about certain political events since about November. I have only recently started keeping up with the news again, in an effort to be informed and aware. I have avoided stating my opinions outside of my inner circle…but sometimes one feels one has to speak! And when doing so, my main thought is, “What exactly is being said?”
I teach young children and many of them do not speak English as their first language. Some still struggle with vocabulary and sentence structure, but given enough context, I feel I have become quite good at working out their meaning and then modelling a coherent phrase for them. I am not so adept with our latest president. Continue reading →
Here it is, New Year’s Day. I have a hard time thinking of January 1st as the start of a new year. For me, that honor belongs to September with the distinct end of summer and all the back to school hoopla. However, I have been reflecting a bit, not over the year but just over the Christmas holiday. Didn’t want to overdo things. Continue reading →
The Back to School rush has come and gone and the new school year is well under way. This year there have been a lot of changes for us.
I’m teaching a different grade in a different room with a different team of colleagues. There has been a lot of organization and adjustment involved, not least in just finding things. I keep heading to where I kept glue sticks last year to find the glue sticks just aren’t there. And where did last year’s teacher keep the two hole punch (equivalent of the American three hole punch)? Surely the room was equipped with this vital piece of equipment. If not, it is now.
But the biggest adjustments have been at home. Continue reading →
We’ve just gotten back from our summer trip to my hometown. It was a good opportunity to see a few old friends and to catch up with family. Our visit culminated in a trip to the beach in South Carolina with my mom, brothers and assorted cousins. We were fortunate to have sunny skies and moderate temperatures (for South Carolina in August!). We were also treated to a beach renewal. Right in front of our house. Continue reading →
While summer officially started June 21st, everyone knows it really starts when school lets out, whenever that may be where you live. For me, that day was today. Finally. But it hasn’t really hit me yet. Despite feeling like this was the longest week on record, it seems like I’m just starting a regular weekend. Maybe the summer feeling will kick in Monday when I don’t have to get up and out before anyone else is awake. But I suspect that unless the weather makes a change for the better, it will still feel more like early March than the proper season. Continue reading →
This morning I found myself making a quick bakery run for the second week in a row. I was out and back inside of ten minutes. Last week was a different story.
Last week I was up early for a Sunday and heard my daughter stirring. I knocked softly on her door and asked if she was up for an early(ish) morning walk. She hadn’t eaten breakfast yet. There was a slight hesitation. Breakfast or walk? The walk won out. I envisioned a brisk turn around the neighborhood, but A opted for the woods. With an internal sigh, I agreed. I love the woods, but that automatically took the walk from ‘brisk’ to ‘serious.’ Continue reading →