Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Happy New Year! (kind of)

I bet if you ask every teacher you know, most would say that they consider September to be their New Year.  If you are not a teacher, do me a favor and close your eyes and think back to when you were a student.  Do you remember that feeling of excitement and new revitalized energy?  The knowledge that this was your year?  That is how I feel every September.  How lucky am I?  I love the feeling of a fresh start.

I always think of the movie You've Got Mail at the point when Tom Hanks tells Meg Ryan that he would send her a bouquet of freshly sharpened pencils.  I have a fond memory of getting brand new pencils and the pencil case.  And the Trapper Keeper!  My favorite had kittens on it.

But there is also a nervousness, a bit of anxiety even, about how everything is going to work out in the upcoming year.  There are always changes and part of being a good teacher is going with the flow.  This year I will not be working with my friend Julie anymore and that makes me so sad.  She is an amazing school social worker and friend and I was honored to work with her for 2 years.  Her new district is lucky to have her.  Also one of my team members is expecting her 2nd baby and I am so excited for her!  But I also know that means we have to ramp up our work to get it all done and get into those classrooms.

If you follow my blog you probably realized that I had a tough year last year.  If you know me IRL you know just how tough that year was.  I really wanted my home life to not interfere with my work life but is that realistic?  I was out for 3 days when Lilly had her EEG testing.  I was out for a few sporadic days when Nanny was getting sicker.  I was out for a week when she died.  You can see why the teachers saw less of me than I or they wanted.  I still think that I did a good job.  I just want to do even better this year!

Getting back to my New Year theme, I decided this year to really make some resolutions this September.  I actually don't like the word resolutions, because it always sounds like something that will be broken.  Maybe I should say that I made some decisions about how I am going to conduct and live my life during the school year.  Being that I am entering my 3rd year in my position at work I now know some things I need to do to be successful.  I have also been living a healthier lifestyle, so that necessitates change to my daily work routine as well.

Make and bring lunch every day
You might think this is a no-brainer and it often was.  But it needs to become an everyday routine, not a  "Wow I have enough leftovers" kind of thing.  I really believe that bringing my lunch every day to camp helped me lose weight and I want/need that trend to continue!

Prepare (wash and iron) outfits on the weekend
Again, you might think nothing of this.  I did well in the beginning of last school year but that went out the window by the end of October.  Nothing stresses me out more than trying to pick out an outfit at 6:00am.  Well, maybe trying to get Lilly to pick out an outfit at 6am is more stressful, but you know what I mean.

Get enough sleep
I have to be at work earlier this year due to contract changes.  I cannot be late.  I must go to bed on time so that I can get up on time and get my butt out the door.  Besides, I just need more sleep!  This leads me to...

I need to walk in the mornings before work
I always have wonderful intentions to exercise when I get home from work.  Or after Lilly is asleep.  This year I am trying to get more early intervention clients, which would get me home later.  After Lilly is asleep I tend to just sit on the couch.  And play silly facebook games.  I don't exercise.  Plus my dog needs a lot of regular exercise.  This is in line with the getting enough sleep issue.  I need to go to bed earlier so that I can get up early enough to walk in the mornings.  I would love to get some yoga in, too.  Maybe I can alternate or walking.

Be organized in general
There is a lot of paperwork involved with my position.  There is a lot I need to do to remain accountable to my boss, the superintendent, and the state.  I also need to stay organized at home so that I can follow through with all the above resolutions.  I am creating a schedule for myself and my family for cleaning, grocery shopping and even cooking.  I want to cook or prepare meals on the weekends so that I always have food ready to go for dinner.  I want to live in a clean, organized home.  We can do this!

I know that it may seem like a lot, but the truth is that I have been doing a lot of this already.  I just need  to be consistent and follow through once the school year begins.  Sometimes that can seem so overwhelming that I lose my routines.   But I know that routines in the face of transitions and change are when they are most important.

I feel blessed to get this fresh start every September!  What are your New (School) Year resolutions?

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