Sunday, July 10, 2016

Bullets to fill in the gaps

Since it's been over a year since I last blogged you can imagine that some adventures have been missed. I'm not sure that I'll be able to write posts to fill in all the gaps so going with some bullets because who doesn't love a bulleted list. So here's just some of the memories that were made since last April as in April of 2015...

  • Dylan conquered his first year in high school!
  • Zoe conquered her last year in elementary school!
  • Both kids maintained high honor roll for the whole year.
  • I finished my first year teaching accelerated students in a brand new program.
  • I completed more college classes and earned my certificate so I could teach gifted and talented students.
  • The whole family visited Tulum, Mexico (our first trip to Mexico) in April 2016. Maybe this will make it's own post sometime soon!
  • Dylan swam on the high school swim team and was invited to swim in the team relay at state champs where he realized he was a little fish in a BIG pond, but that swimming is where his heart is.
  • Dylan also ran track in the spring and decided that running is not at all him and he will never do that again.
  • Zoe kept on flipping in her gymnastics competitions ending the year being 3rd all around in the state.
  • In May 2015 I was admitted to the hospital with a pulmonary embolism. Dr. Garcia at the walk in clinic saved my life! I could have died, but I didn't.
  • Dave, Zoe and I saw Meghan Trainor in concert and she was amazing!
  • Both kids made the local papers...multiple times...Zoe for earning honorable mention in a statewide writing contest and gymnastics and Dylan for swimming on the high school swim team and sharing his experience of swimming on the local team too.
  • I interviewed for an assistant principal position and for the first time ever did not get a job I interviewed for. Learned a lesson in humility. But, then learned that sometimes not getting what you want is a stroke of luck as other obligations and opportunities came about.
  • Dylan passed his lifeguarding course and got his first job as a pool lifeguard.
  • We saw the Blue Man group.
  • Enjoyed a visit from my grandfather and uncle. Got to show them around the beach!
  • Spent a few days in Williamsburg exploring and visited Busch Gardens and Water Country USA where Dave and I went on our honeymoon.
  • Celebrated Dylan's 15th birthday, Zoe's 11th, and Dave and my 16th anniversary!
  • Dylan has had three girlfriends (shhh, don't tell him I told you that) and Zoe still things boys smell (which is fine by Dave and me).
  • I attended ISTE,  a HUGE instructional technology conference and it was so much fun!
  • Enjoyed quite a few beach days, snow days, and holidays.
  • Enjoyed friends and family in this thing we call LIFE!
As I'm thinking about what to add to my bullets I can't help thinking that it's been a pretty good 15 months. We've accomplished a lot, made some great memories, and enjoyed what life had to offer. Sure all of that was between carpooling everywhere, chores, homework, and all those other things that fill in the days. Of course there is much I've missed. I'm sure I'll remember something that I just have to come back and add over the next few days. 

All in all #lifeisgood. Now to not have to write another bulleted list in a year. Instead, hopefully I can get back to recording the good times complete with posts and pictures.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Being Content Where I Am

Ask me to describe myself and "driven" is a word I would probably list in my top 5, maybe even top 3. I always have a plan for the what next. In my daily schedule, in my personal life, in my career...I enjoy setting goals, working hard to meet them, and celebrating when I accomplish them. However, my celebration is short lived as I immediately begin contemplating my next move.

The other day I was listening to a podcast on the topic of "drive" and the speaker (sorry, I wish I could remember which podcast it was to give them credit) talked about how sometimes driven people are so focused on their next move or meeting their goals that they're pretty much blinded by the future. They are so farsighted, they can't see what's right in front of them. Instead of putting all their effort into the current activity/task/job to the best of their abilities and enjoying the moment, they are just going through the motions and thinking what they should do next to get where they want to be. They don't take the time to be content.

Guilty as charged.

Content? Most definitely not a word that would be listed in my top 5 to describe myself.

After much reflection, I've came to the realization that I need a new goal. No, my goal setting won't be going away anytime soon. But, this goal is to better immerse myself in the today. 

Goal: Be Content.

Of course a goal without a plan is just a wish so I've thought about a few ways I can practice being content. As I'm enjoying my summer vacation, I need to relish the time I have with my kids who won't be around the house for many more summers. I will be thankful that we have this precious time together. When I head back to school, I want to focus on refining a new program that I was a part of last year, not to make it better for the following year, but to make it better for the here and now. I will be thankful for the job I love and the opportunity to work in a niche that I am passionate about. As I begin my doctoral journey this fall, I want to learn from the class I'm in and not look at the next class I'll be taking or what I will do after I get my degree. I will be thankful to keep learning and furthering my education. 

Tomorrow isn't a guarantee. 
I want to be thankful for my today. 
I want to become more nearsighted.
I want to be content!

Sometimes you just have to write...about the first funeral

I've had an itch to write lately. There is something therapeutic about putting feelings and thoughts into words and letting them flow. It's been awhile since I've visited my blog. Today I spent some time reading old posts and recounting memories. There are a lot of memories recorded on this here blog considering it has been documenting my family's life since Dylan went off to Kindergarten and he will be heading into 10th grade this fall!

Today, was a pretty emotional day. One of Dylan's friend's dad passed away from brain cancer earlier this week and today was his funeral. Dave and I have kept open communication with Dylan throughout everything. We discussed the funeral and Dylan said that he felt that it would only be right that he attended. We are not friends with the family, but I told Dylan that I would be happy to go with him if he would like. His response, "No thanks, mom, I've got this."

This morning I dropped him off at the church to attend the funeral. Watching him walk into the church alone was painful. I ended up driving home with tears in my eyes as I thought about him experiencing his first funeral, thinking about his friend, wondering what to say, and how to act. I thought about his friend who lost his dad when he was so young and then thought about Dave and Dylan. I thought about his friend's mom who lost her husband and was now raising a young man (and a sister) on her own and then thought about me with Dave and our own two. I cried for Dylan and for the family.

When Dylan came home, he said he was glad he went. He sat with another friend during the service. I had prepared him for how the service would run and that there would probably be a luncheon of sorts afterwards. To keep things light I had joked with him to not eat all the free food because humor is how our family deals with stress! He told me he didn't actually eat anything because he just didn't feel like eating. That's how I know my son was touched by the experience.

I'm proud of him. He thought about his friend enough to put himself in an uncomfortable situation to show his support.  I made sure to tell him how proud he made me.

Then, this afternoon I spent time with my son, doing what he wanted to do. We played games, took a walk, he talked, I listened. Tomorrow is not a guarantee so for today I will enjoy every moment!
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