Tuesday, November 19, 2019

No Voice

I've been fighting some kind of congestion for a few days. The medicine is helping. I've been trying to get lots of sleep, too...that's not working as well. I keep waking up around two or three A.M. and I'm up for the day. So I shouldn't be surprised to wake up today (at 2:23 am) with no voice. 

Every teacher has experienced this...teaching with little to no voice. Physically, I'm feeling better than I have in the past few days. Today I have to face my seventh-graders with no voice. It's days like these where I realize how much I rely on my voice. It's also days like these when I'm reminded how awesome my students really are. Usually, I'm greeted with help as I whisper and croak my way through instructions.

They help each other out more. They offer me help. It reminds me of how grateful I am that I get to spend my days working with these kind students. 

Wish me luck today! Oh, and if you're going to NCTE, hope to see you there...

Sharing this as a slice at Two Writing Teachers
Read more slices there! 

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Notebooks & Goodbye Notes

I just arrived home from a surprise trip to Massachusetts. I drove north to surprise my niece and nephew for Halloween...and I did! 

On my second day there, my niece grabbed a notebook she had from a year ago. She asked me to work in our notebooks together. I told her that I was her age when my mother gave me my first notebook. She said she wanted to use notebooks too- just like me- except she wants to draw in her notebooks. I told her that she's the boss of her own notebooks, and that sounded like a great idea to me!

We spent time each day doodling and writing in our pages. 

She showed me some of her drawing tricks and I showed her some of the things that I wrote. It was heaven. 

Saying goodbye is always hard, so a tradition I started when they were young is I leave them a goodbye note. My nephew always reminds me that he has a collection of all of my notes. I usually leave in the morning before anyone wakes up, so it gives them one more surprise. 

When I got home last night after a long day of driving, I got two texts. My sister texted me to show me what my niece was doing...

 A few minutes later, I got this text from my niece...

Be still my heart!!! Today I will be texting her what I did in my notebook. The power of writing to develop relationships is real. I witnessed it. I am living it.

Sharing as a slice at Two Writing Teachers!

Thursday, October 31, 2019

I Did It!

Today is the final day of #TeachWritetober19! I set some goals and more often than not, I met my goals. I leave this month having written and post thirty blog posts. I finished and started a notebook and I revised more than half of my book. That's not bad for thirty-one days of work. I leave this month feeling proud of myself. I did it! I focus on what I achieved and how I can keep this habit going!

Wednesday, October 30, 2019


Yesterday I cleared out all of my email accounts. Answered emails. Organized emails. And then, the best...delete, delete, delete! I sent from over four hundred emails in my three accounts to twenty-nine.

What is is about organizing an email account that feels so good? It's like an empty sink and all the dishes have been washed or a freshly vacuumed floor. It's like laundry folded and put away. 

And now I feel old...I just wrote a blog post celebrating an organized email inbox. Well, whatever brings you joy, right?!?!

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Almost Halloween

Halloween has never been my favorite holiday...even as a kid. A few weeks ago, I was Facetiming with my niece, Jillian, and she was telling me all about her costume. She even asked me to come trick-or-treating with her. The problem with that is we live 400 miles apart. After I hung up I thought, "I could go trick-or-treating with her..."

It's a surprise. I'll be driving up on Halloween to surprise her. I can't wait!

Now for my costume...we Facetimed again and she suggested what I should wear on Halloween for trick-or-treating with my friends. She said that I should dress up as HER. My dark curls are the opposite of her blond tendrils, so I solved it. 

For the first time ever, I am looking forward to Halloween! 

Monday, October 28, 2019

Listen for...

Listen for 
the love
Ignore all 
the hate-

Listen for
the kindness
Ignore all 
the malice-

Listen for
the laughter
Ignore all
the yelling-

Listen for
the honesty
Ignore all 
the liars-

It's not easy
Nothing worthy
ever is...

It's what I'm
trying to do

Ignore the 
phonies and 
for the  
and the

I'm feeling a bit down today...struggling with some relationships in my life. As always, writing to the rescue. Poetry to the rescue! I needed these words and I'm sharing them because maybe someone else needs them too...

Sunday, October 27, 2019

Number 82-ish

A few years ago, I began sorting through my notebooks- all of my notebooks. I decided that I wanted to count them. That seems easy enough, right? Until another notebook pops up in a different spot and I've already numbered beyond that. I will usually tack it on to the end and keep going. Today I started a new notebook. 

The last notebook that I wrote in was number eighty, so you'd think the next notebook would be eighty-one, but NO. I found a notebook that I hadn't counted. 
Number 80
Number 81

So, my new notebook is number eighty-two. I still include -ish because there may be another notebook hanging around waiting to be counted...until then, I will happily write in my new notebook. 

Saturday, October 26, 2019

What to Write?

It's Saturday. #TeachWritetober coming to an end. I've blogged 25 out of the past 26 days. It's been a process. I want to continue, but I'm realizing I'm struggling to come up with ideas. I feel like I've used all the ideas, all the words, and nothing is left.

Thinking about "theme" days for writing. Thinking about more poetry. Thinking, thinking, thinking...

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Do It Anyway!

I wish I could sing-
In the car, I bring down the house.
I wish I could paint-
My watercolors frame the pages of my notebook.
I wish I could dance-
My hustle burns up the living room.
I wish I could draw-
Sketches and doodles emerge from my pencil.

I'll never be famous for my singing or
artistic skills (or lack of skills),
but I still sing,
I still paint,
I still dance,
I still draw...

For myself
because it brings me

What do you wish you could do? 
Do it anyway!

It's not about the fame.
It's not about the money.
It's not about the skill.
It's about the love,
It's about the JOY
you get from the process!
DO it anyway!