8.11.2015

In Review: Bringing Up Bébé by Pamela Druckerman

Don't take this as any sort of announcement. I had been told that this book had a lot of good adult life lessons regardless of whether or not you had a baby. So no, I am not having a baby.


And those recommendations were right. This book was full of insightful research and ideas about how to live a happy life, and a life that benefits not only others' personal growth, but your own growth as well.

Pamela (I like using first names rather than last, when referring to authors after I've read their books) reflects on breaking tradition and what is gained and lost when one chooses to do so. I think the loss part is okay. Some might think they can go through life and never lose anything and only make gains, but in my long 27.67 years of wisdom it's that in every gain there are some losses. But those losses can have positive influence and you and those around you.

By flooding her opinions with research, Pamela is so convincing in her notions about making changes. You should always be searching for the best things for you and those around you. Seeking them out will make you a better person and make life more enjoyable.

Amen, sister.




6.29.2015

God must feel like a teacher.

"What do you do?"
"I teach high school."
"Oh, wow, how's that?"
"..."

If I put together a top ten list of most common conversations I've had in my life, this would be number one. And it would be exactly the same, exactly the way I wrote it, every single time. 
Teaching is hard to explain to someone who doesn't teach. I say that in the present, as in, you must be currently teaching in order to understand teaching. I believe that former teachers, remember a lot about their teaching experience, but I also think it's a bit like birthing a baby. Most of the pain is forgotten/covered up with the cuteness of the baby and/or modern medicine (or in the teaching case: anti-depressants). 

Being a teacher means you are partially responsible for what 200+ other human beings do while they're under your jurisdiction. The measurement of your work is hardly ever based on something you worked on by yourself and then presented to someone else. You are measured by how well other human beings can do what you've taught them to do. Which means your success and satisfaction in your job is based on what these 200+ other human beings do on a daily basis. I say this because if all I did all day was plan glorious lessons and then hand them to someone else to teach and then went home, I think I would feel pretty satisfied with my work about 88% of the time. However, that is not what I do. Therefore, my self-satisfaction rate is at about 19% on the daily.

I struggle each day to cope with the fact that I don't have total control of what my students choose to do, yet I, as well as others, still base my job performance and my satisfaction with my career on what those students choose to do. Which I shouldn't, right? I should know that I put in my best effort for the day and that's all I can really control. To that I say: ah ha ha ha...ha...HA! It's harder than you think. When they don't turn things in on time. When they don't do their in-class work. When they choose to SnapChat instead of study. When they don't care for their grade for 8 weeks and then beg for mercy 3 days before the end of the term.

I understand that students have circumstances that don't allow them to do things on time or that schoolwork really isn't what they should be worried about. I have those students, I know them and I sympathize that. And a majority of my students are not the ones I'll talk about next. I'm talking about the ones who just "don't." There are no other words that would describe those students better. They don't. They don't care, they don't want to, they don't work, they don't try, they simply don't. Regardless of the reason why they don't, they still don't. Now, how can I be okay with what I do when they just plain don't? Should I say don't again? Don't.

Well, let me tell you how. I had a vision a few days ago. Okay not really a vision it was more like a discernment. Maybe manifestation sounds better? Let's call it all three. In my viscernifestation I learned something.

6.16.2015

You've been Walter Mitty-ed!

The first time we saw this movie I left the theater feeling like I had just experienced something incredible. The only problem was that I couldn't figure out quite what that something was. Obviously I'd experienced the movie itself, but the movie made me have some other experience that I couldn't identify or describe. I think I'll say the word experience one more time just to push you over the edge. Experience.


4.15.2015

In Review: Committed by Elizabeth Gilbert

After reading Eat, Pray, Love, I HAD to see what was going to happen to Elizabeth Gilbert and her Felipe.

Allow me a small confession here: I have a really hard time buying books. One of my favorite pass times from ages 19 to 26 as a single lady (is that really the word we want to use between girl and woman? I mean, it sounds slightly like a tiny princess toilet rather than a thoughtful human being. I guess Beyoncé called all of us together cause she figured we were at her level. I suppose I am on Beyoncé's level. Thanks, Bey.) was to go to a bookstore and stare at the books I wanted to buy. Mind you, my boat is full of integrity so ne'er e'er did I crack the covers of those books except to read prologues, praises, or the poignant, tear-jerking, nostalgia-inducing author dedications. (I mean "For Dad" come ON. You wouldn't be able to wipe all of my tears from that, even if you had a ShamWow.)

I would just stare at them and wish that I had them in my hands. After my betrothed discovered this adorable habit of mine, in order to shorten the length of time spent staring at books on our dates, he would just buy me the books that I was staring at. I tell you this because Committed was one of the first books he bought me. And also embarrassing anecdotes are fun.

Back to the real reason we're here: the book!

3.05.2015

Taylor Swift Is Singing My Life 10 Years Ago.

I know I'm tagging in late, but hear me out.

At first I was mad at Taylor for not letting me listen to her latest album with my Spotify subscription. Then I thought to myself, if I wrote an incredible book (which I will someday), then I would like people to enjoy it for the worthy price of $16.99 ($14.99 paperback) and not $9.99 a month, along with busloads of other songs, eh...books, that feel like they are FO FREEEE!

So after that train came veering safely around the corners of my mind, I decided to forgive Taylor for wanting a fair monetary representation of all of her hard work. I get you, Tay. Which is to say, I bought the album.

For the first few listens I went straight to the hits: Blank Space, Shake It Off. That lasted a couple days. And then I hit the deep tracks.

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