Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Slice of Life: A Smoothie Disaster

On Tuesdays, the community of Two Writing Teachers hosts the Slice of Life. Join the incredible community by writing a snippet of life, or even join with just a comment or two. Everyone is welcome!

Last night's twitter chat was inspiring as the community of Two Writing Teachers discussed how we live and teach writerly lives. This morning, I wasn't sure what I was going to write, and then my daughters provided inspiration with the catastrophe of a spilled smoothie. I only wish I had the good sense to take pictures, but you will all have to use my words and your imagination in order to bring this story to life. Let's start by saying that I make smoothies for my high school daughters every morning, and I make them with plenty of blueberries so they are a lovely purple color. 

This morning, we had a welcome 90 minute delay, but it's amazing how extra time can make us all late. Are we the only ones who experience this paradox? 

With the extra time, I collected and started the girls' laundry, a job I usually leave for them. I guess the extra time made me feel generous, and I was stuck with my writing, trying to decide on my slice for the day. 

A little while later, Julia and Clare rushed around the kitchen gathering their lunches, snacks, bags, backpacks--for whatever reason, Julia seemed like she had even more to carry than usual.

"Don't forget your smoothie," I said, sensing that the red solo cup would be left on the counter since the hands were so full. 

I didn't look up again as the two of them headed for the garage, but I did look up when Julia burst through the door a minute later. I didn't see her, as I was in the library, but I did hear her:

"I hate your smoothie," she said. No, she yelled. Her feet pounded up the stairs.

Clare was right behind her through the kitchen door, but she was laughing. 

"Smoothie catastrophe, Mom," she said. "We need some towels."

Clare and I headed to the garage with a roll of paper towels, a garbage bag, and my container of cleaning wipes. I wasn't sure what we were going to find. Drops of purple smoothie led to the garage, becoming less and less like drops and more and more like blobs as I got closer to the car. Splashes of purple smoothie were all over the door and the floor. Fortunately, she hadn't spilled too much on the seat.

Clare and I were just finishing cleaning the mess when Julia reappeared in a new and clean outfit. 

"There's a little more laundry," Julia said. "Sorry."

No problem. I just wanted the time to write my slice! I'd found a good one!

Happy Slicing!

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Running errands was more than I expected...

On Tuesdays, the community of Two Writing Teachers hosts the Slice of Life. Join the incredible community by writing a snippet of life, or even join with just a comment or two. Everyone is welcome!

My youngest daughter and I took a trip to the grocery store and CVS this afternoon. She had a list of ingredients for a special dinner she wants to make, and I had a 25% off coupon at CVS. The weather is unseasonably warm, I was home reasonably early, and she had completed her homework--we were feeling happy with life.

We made it through the grocery store--the avocados were a little hard, so Cecily will cook for us tomorrow night--and we headed to CVS. When we arrived, I parked, we got out of the car, and walking in, I saw a shoe on the sidewalk. A man was standing in the middle of a parking space. When I looked down, there was a woman on all fours dripping blood from her nose. One of her stockinged feet was shoeless.

"Do you know her?" I asked the man.

He shook his head. "She just fell," he answered. "She caught a foot on the curb, and she fell right on her nose."

He and I stayed with her, me rubbing her back. Someone from the store called 911, another person called her husband, and Cecily got a chair from inside. Someone brought paper towels and rubber gloves, and we waited with her until help arrived. Joanne was coherent and embarrassed, having been on a special mission to get Valentine's Day cards for her grandchildren. That mission will probably include a trip to the ER to get some stitches.

My father fell down the basement stairs almost 14 years ago and sustained a head injury that changed all of our lives. We all walk so precariously close to unseen edges, and it takes so little time to slip or take a wrong step or misjudge a situation. I know that I am still haunted by my father's accident, but I am also more appreciative moments and grateful for all the joy I have in my life.

Happy Slicing,

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Slice of Life- One Little Word for 2016

On Tuesdays, the community of Two Writing Teachers hosts the Slice of Life. Join the incredible community by writing a snippet of life, or even join with just a comment or two. Everyone is welcome!

This will be the fourth year that I have chosen one little word to be my guide for the year. I have lived with present, kindness, and acknowledge. What is so is that each word has lingered in my life well beyond its designated year. Together, these words serve as anchors to me, especially when life feels stressful and overwhelming.

I have made several lists of possible words for 2016, and I have debated some wordly finalists. I loved Beth Moore's choice of play, and I admired her post and passion about play in education. I will, in fact, sign up for a crusade to have play an integral part of education. I also related to Dana Murphy's choice of joy. I do have great joy in my life, and sometimes, I forget to celebrate all of it. Other serious contenders for 2016 were balance, nurture, remember, and moment, and the winner is wonder.

I have been working hard to bring wonder and curiosity into classrooms, and I want to make sure that I bring wonder to the forefront of my own thinking. I want to linger in the what if's and the possibilities. I want to push a little past what is comfortable and what I know. I'm trusting that wonder will remind me to ask questions and linger with the challenge and enjoyment of growing within the answers.

Happy 2016 to all of you.