Saturday, October 20, 2018

Looking at the Heart

As always, my writing mentors speak to me just when I need to hear them.

Scrolling through Facebook, I came upon Leigh Anne's post (notice I stole her title) reflecting on Ruth's post.  There was a tweet included with Leigh Anne's and those words went straight to my heart because like Leigh Anne, I felt I had been focusing on behaviors instead of hearts.

I'm long-term subbing for a friend's maternity leave.

She's a special ed teacher. An amazing one.

She's a regular ed teacher also. An amazing one.

Kids love her.

And many of the students she works with have behavior issues. And there are regular teenagers who have their own issues. In the stress of starting in her classroom, in the hurriedness of catching up, in finding my "teaching every day" mojo, I forgot to look at the hearts.

I let behaviors get to me.

I thought back to a conversation I had with a friend one day about a certain student. I told her how I was having a difficult time with a kid. And in describing what was going on, I realized that I was the problem.

Then the new boy came. I'm really trying to connect with him and make his first days more comfortable. And another new boy started and he was so nervous he didn't make it to class. Then there's the new boy from last year who is so angry. That anger comes out in sarcasm and meanness. He's tough. He's hard. And in thinking about those boys, I knew I'd have to deal differently with all the others. I had to quit being the problem.

So, I'm going to keep the words on "my" desk so I see them every day because even experienced teachers need reminders...

What if we looked at the heart instead of the behavior?

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

#WOD . Hidden

hidden in the fog
of my early morning brain
to tumble to my fingerprints
and spill on to the page

10 Things I'd Rather Do Than Write
1. Play Facebook games
2. Take a bath
3. Read my book
4. Take the polish off my toenails
5. Eat ice cream
6. Make phone calls
7. Check my snapchat and instagram
8. Doze in my chair
9. twiddle my thumbs
10. Prepare for classes tomorrow

And now I've shared some writing today.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

#sol18 A Fish Tale

I need help!!!!!!!!!!
I caught a fish!!!!!!!

Max is one of our youngest grandkids and he is fishing crazy. Give him a pole when he comes to the lake and he is set for the day.

Where is it? What did you do with it?

It's on the dock. My friends are watching it.

Well, let me throw some clothes on...  it's 8:30 on Saturday morning. I'm lounging and drinking coffee.

 My friends are so helpful. Tony, you should get some friends like mine. Tony is his big brother and has barely opened his eyes.

I follow him out the door and up the road to the dock. Mind you, he jumped on his bike and raced up the road. I walk as fast as I can. The neighbors are laughing as I walk down the road. They heard him yelling all the way to the cabin.

I hand him an old towel and tell him to hold the fish with the towel and take the hook out of its mouth. He's pretty proud when he puts that fish in the bucket.

I stay and watch for quite a while. 3 boys. 1 fishing pole. Surely there would be some fighting. But no. Their motto was teamwork. They handed the pole off to each other. Baited hooks and took fish off. Together.

Grandpa frying up some of the bluegills

Eventually, the other boys left, but not Max. 6 hours later we made him leave his fishing spot for a few hours. He went back that night and caught more fish. And again in the morning. He ended up catching enough bluegills that there was enough fish for all of us to have lunch!

Saturday, July 14, 2018

#Celebratelu Things That Make Me Smile This Summer

Holy Cow. I let summer fun get in the way of writing for a while. But I'm not going to apologize for that. We've been busy having fun!

Chloe was not letting us leave without her

We took a little road trip to Bayfield, Wisconsin in mid-June and it was wonderful. What a beautiful area on Lake Superior. We stayed at a great little mom and pop motel right on the lake. It's probably the cleanest, friendliest place we've ever stayed. I would go back in heartbeat.

One of our favorite places on this trip was Tom's Burned Down Cafe. Talk about making the best of a bad situation. This guy buys a restaurant and gets ready to open. The place burns down the night before with the insurance check on his desk. He puts a tarp up and opens anyway. Never did rebuild, just keeps it like this.  Chloe was more than welcome and they even had water for dogs!

We also went to a Jackson Brown concert with our youngest son (a huge fan). Such an amazing night. The stories and the songs are still going through my head.

4th of July week was BUSY. Lots and lots of activities going on. There were visits with grandkids (and their parents), boat rides with friends, fireworks forever, another concert... Finally, everyone went home and Chloe and I had a quiet (hot) week at the lake. A little golf, a lot of watching sunsets and we finish the week last night with a birthday party.

So there you have it. A little summer celebration sharing. I hope yours is going as well as mine is and you forget to stop and share your celebrations too!

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

#sol18 . Road Trip

Make a list.

Edit the list.

Cross things off the list.

Lose the list.

Make a new list.

Heading out on a road trip.

No specific plans, just a destination in mind.

Motel reservation made.

Load the car.

Make room for Chloe (she loves road trips)

Too many clothes--not leaving any.

Sunglasses? Check.
Water bottle filled? Check.
Snack box filled? Check.
Mail stopped? Check.
Blog post written? Check!

See you next week!

Saturday, June 9, 2018


It's been such a lovely week at the lake. The weather, for the most part, has been lovely. Chloe and I have been able to be outside, playing and taking lots of walks. If I'm not playing with Chloe, then I can sit outside, read and stare at the lake.

There have been afternoon naps, golf with friends, lunch with friends, dinner with friends.

You're getting the theme here, right?

My husband got back to the lake yesterday and got to join in the fun. While being alone is nice sometimes, I'm glad he's back. Things are just more fun with him around. After a busy week at work, he's more than ready for some lake fun.

I'm looking forward to heading home for a few days though. I've got some friends to check in with back there!

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

#sol18 A Perfect Summer Day

"The kids want to swim. Care if we come out?"

It definitely wasn't a lake day. Strong winds, dirty lake water. Ugh.

But we really wanted to see them. I sent the video and said, "How about we come to you?"

The girls jumped out of the car to greet us when we arrived. Or maybe they were just excited to see Chloe--because Chloe was sure excited to see them! Then the youngest boys came running. H had a secret that he told me, but not Grandpa because he wanted to surprise Grandpa. He learned to ride his bike without training wheels! The saying "smile a mile wide" was no exaggeration as he rode down the sidewalk showing off for us. Every so often, for the rest of the afternoon, he'd come up and say, "I'm going to ride around the block." And off he'd go. Still smiling.

The older boys appeared and we got hugs from them too. They'd been in the tents set up in the backyard. Camping had been the plan, but the winds and possibility of storms changed that. Backyard camping it is. Dads taught boys how to set up the tents. The plan was to sleep in the tents Friday and Saturday nights, but the weather had other plans. No worries though. Everyone had fun playing in them until bedtime.

We spent the afternoon talking. Family happenings, jobs, politics, music, and my favorite, Books!  My granddaughters are now reading YA books and it's so fun to share book ideas with them. They gave me ideas, I shared a few with them, and even a couple suggestions from the dads. We had a great time talking about them and why we loved them. I have a few I now have to check our library for.

Finally, it was time for my husband and me to leave. We both sighed as we got in the car. While the weather wasn't perfect, the day itself certainly was.