Things I’ve Learned

1. No two kids are the same, even if some do seem to be echoes of others.
2. It’s important for teachers to apologize when they are wrong or to correct misinformation they have accidentally passed on.

3. It’s amazing what people will believe.

4. Variety and flexibility are the two most important qualities any teacher can have.

5. I love developing curriculum, using it, and modifying it.

6. I hate grading.

7. We have to change as we experience new things and take in new information.

8. Trust my instincts.

9. Being true to myself means I must be willing to change.

10. There are pills for many of my problems.

11. It’s totally okay to be alone.

12. I’m friendly, not a flirt. It’s not always my fault how people interpret me.

13. Sometimes I come across as a grade-A bitch and it is rarely on purpose.

14. I’m not nearly as sarcastic as other people think.

15. As long as I’m invested in the characters and there aren’t too many egregious language issues, I will read the trashiest stuff.

16. I’m not cut out for a life of leisure.

17. I’d rather sit on a deck or patio and read that “be out.”

18. I really do need to write every day to maintain my mental health.

19. I have to stick to my plans if I want things to work out.

20. People are infinitely fascinating.

21. I like fall and spring more than summer and winter. I’m a between kind of person.

22. Fairy tales can teach us everything we need to know.

23. There are two really important commandments and ten that we should try to keep.

24. Everything comes around again.

25. Thirty years of migraines is too many years of migraines.

26. I’m much more a why than how person.

27. I’m a little too good at avoiding things, at making messes, and I regularly fail at adulting.

28. I’m so lucky to work with teenagers. Some are awesome, some are terrible, and they are all in the process of becoming “real people.” It’s an honor to watch that process and influence it.

29. The best teachers practice their crafts.

30. The best teachers constantly adapt and change.

31. The best teachers are willing to ask questions to get information.

32. Every “new” education reform is 20-50 years old, dusted off, and renamed

33. I’m not a great teacher because I ramble, I hate grading, and I hate it when things are too quiet.

34. I’m not the best Christian for a variety of reasons.

35. I love how language is constantly evolving.

36. People will die and sometimes those deaths will feel like wasted lives; other times those deaths feel like a release.

37. I am blessed with some great friends.

38. I appreciate even the worst moments of my life, because they have shaped who I am today.

39. Failure will happen and failure is worthwhile if I learn something from it.

40. I can’t make everyone happy.

41. I am responsible for the things I do.

42. Not everything is about me.

Traditions

My friends and I break out the great bottles (five years and running).

This year it was Adelsheim and Argyle Pinots before the smoked turkey; Casacade Cliffs RSV Barbera (2012) with dinner [Thank God my stuffing tasted better than it looked!]; a 2012 Forgeron Cab to accompany “Pieces of April”.

We all chip in for food prep [but everything I made flopped this year in looks].

And, we all remember our birth family as we appreciate our FOC.

My folks like to play with recipes, my brother and his family bounce around, and I don’t drive nearly six hours.

I sometimes miss the bizarre movies from my college years: Misery, Fargo, Alive.

The epic bottle is the Shallon Blackberry Wine. If you ever get to Astoria, Oregon and the winemaker is still alive it’s more than worth the stop.

Today’s Truths

1. Not everything happens for a reason. In fact, it doesn’t always matter why things happen. How we deal with the things that happen does matter.

2. God totally gives us more than we can handle sometimes. It encourages us to ask for help.

3. I’m a teaching lifer. Every time I have an epically bad day/week/year, I find myself unable to seriously consider working as a barista.

4.  Family of Choice can co-exist with Family of Blood (but they maybe should stay separated).

5. People can’t be saved or changed.

I decided to start writing again, to force myself to write every day on a blog, because of Amanda Palmer’s “The Art of Asking.” It’s time.