Looking Forward to August

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I’m starting to sound like a broken record, but I cannot believe how quickly time is passing! It seems like just a few days ago I was heading out of my classroom to begin my maternity leave, and now I am pulling materials together for the first weeks of the school year.

I definitely want to appreciate everything that is in store for our little family, and August is going to keep us on our toes.

What’s in store for August

Baby Boy’s 4-month check up
Back to school for my husband and myself AKA
My return to teaching since March 3rd
Birthdays upon birthdays! 14 big ones in our family (Who knew November was so sexy???)
The return of football, preseason
Family pictures with my parents
Bad Moms movie night with my girlfriends
A family visit with an aunt and uncle we haven’t seen in a few years
A massage appointment for this mama thanks to my godmother
July was fabulous, but I’m always eager to start a new month because it inspires me to try, try again at achieving goals.

Family Goals: Spend more time with each other than in front of a screen.

I know that his is qualitative, not a quantitative goal unless I literally keep track of minute-to-minute time spent. I do know that I will be gone from the house more than I ever have before since Cliff was born so it will be important to make each moment, each hug, each snuggle count. Nobody wishes that they would have watched one more episode of TV or checked Facebook one more time when they calculate their valuable moments. I may have less time, but I will be better quality time spent with my family in this upcoming month.

Health Goals: Keep everything in check and hit the gym daily.

I have reached my body composition goal by being able to fit into my khaki capri pants for work. It’s a dull goal, but now I just want to maintain that achievement. I can accomplish this by sticking to my 80/20 diet (80% healthy, 20% cheat food) and getting to the gym. I am grateful that I enjoy working out, mostly afterward, and it’s not a mental mountain to climb.

Professional Goals: Take in every day, remain present, and then become reflective.

Ask anyone who has been working full time for some time if they would like an extended period of time off, and you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone who would turn you down. I will not insult stay-at-home parents and call my maternity leave/summer break a vacation because trust me, I worked! But what I will say is that this time away from the classroom reminded me why I love my profession, why I believe it’s my calling, and refocused me on my objectives: support student learning through innovative and whole-child instruction. I want to work with students, their parents and my colleagues to support their educational advances. Money, power, and titles were not why I chose to become a teacher, and I have forgotten that in the past few years, allowing what I thought I was “owed” to taint my opinion of what I do and what I contribute. I was able to conduct a two-week SAT English study camp this summer, and it was just enough to remind that I love my job.

Halloween Blehs and An Announcement

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That’s about as festive as you’re going to see me get about this holiday folks.  I’m not a huge fan.  I’m an adult, so all I see are dollar signs around Halloween.  I give out candy $$  I buy Halloween decorations and costumes $$ I have to pretend to be excited when friends and family talk about Halloween Emotional $$.  Additionally, I’m an introvert, so I’m noooooot excited about going out.

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Probably, and most importantly, I am an adult in my 30s.  This is a holiday for young people and children.  I don’t have children of my own, so I feel it’s my duty to be a Halloween Debbie Downer; anything else would be considered inappropriate.

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The best part about today is that it’s a Friday.

In other news, I’m slowly starting to lose my mind.  It’s been exactly 186 days, 6 months and 3 days, since I completed the last semester of my graduate program.  How do I celebrate my downtime?  Researching new graduate programs.  I have been craving a master’s degree in English since approximately halfway through my Curriculum and Instruction program.  Given the high-sign from my husband, I applied to a distance learning program and was accepted yesterday!

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The program is through Southern New Hampshire University, a Division II school that has been acknowledged for its outstanding and innovative campaigns to increase its online programs.

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The traditional campus setting has approximately 2,300 students, yet it’s online enrollment topples the 32,000 mark.  Additionally, their 2013 soccer team won the NCAA Division II National Championship!

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I was somewhat skeptical when I began my research because I feared, as many did, that SNHU was another for-profit school, such as the University of Phoenix and Kaplan.  Rest assured that it was not, I moved forward with my awesome admissions rep, Alyssa.  As of Thursday, October 30, I am a Southern New Hampshire University Penman!

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More phallic than I’d hoped…

When I get nervous about taking on this challenge and failing at something that I know will take a lot of time, dedication, effort, and energy, I hope my mind will return to this:

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and not this:

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Pins of the Week

Pinterest of the Week

1.  Back to School Lunch Packing

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2.  Helping Your Students Become Tech-Savy While Searching the Web

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2.  2.  

3. 3.  Helping Students Understand Sophisticated Literary Techniques Via Disney Films

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4.  Setting Up and Running a Socratic Seminar

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5.  Avoiding Plagiarism with Harry Potter

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