Reading List 2021

Monday, 27 April 2020

Allowed

I've been trying to keep it positive, I have. But honestly, I've reached the point where I am crying and drinking the last little bit of my wine at 4:00 in the afternoon. Apart from this blog, I have kept a journal most of my whole life. I have volumes. They must be destroyed when I die. Remind me to put that in my will. But I am done … D   O   N   E.
I can't write everything that I wrote in my journal because god forbid, professionally, any of this comes back to bite me on the bottom, but there were numerous curse words, and here are some quotes, "I'm tired of not seeing my friends and co-workers and having a laugh. I hate that there's nothing to watch on tv and did I mention I make EVERY effing supper? and I don't have a box of wine, and I'm ugly and fat and my hair is horrible and I just want it all to be NORMAL again...." and it goes on from there. I was honestly sitting on a little piece of back porch where the sun hits it in a chair that caused me pain to move because I HURT the OTHER SIDE of my ribs by simply reaching across and putting all my weight on the arm of the chair in my pseudo "office" which isn't an office but part of my living room to grab a book that had fallen on the floor and when I heaved myself up and over and felt an ugly pain in my ribs on the other side (not the side I hurt when I tried to pull the rock out of the ground around 3 weeks ago, and what the hell is wrong with my ribs???? Can you have soft ribs?) and I was drinking the last little dribble of red wine out of a stemless glass that has a dividing line in the middle with the top side saying positive optimist, and the bottom saying negative  pessimist (for the whole glass half empty / half full way of looking at life and isn't that a joke????) and my son came around the back of the house to get a hose because we can't handle having a twenty year old doing bloody nothing with his time and he saw me crying and just knew and tried to do something funny with the cat to make me feel better which just made me cry more and then the wine was all gone and I came in the house to see my husband upside down on an inversion table thingy that he bought second hand because he has herniated discs in his neck which give him pain all the time and my daughter saw me and said, "oh, mom" and I said "don't, just leave me alone" and then I came upstairs to my bedroom and wrote in the journal and kept crying and then wrote this post, because surely I am NOT the only one who has these moments and I'm allowed to have these moments.   I'm not the only one, am I?

Sunday, 19 April 2020

Sunday April 19, 2020

I'm in my livingroom. It is spitting rain outside, and it's gloomy and dull, and still pretty cold outside. I can hear the dramatic background music to some old monster movie that husband is watching. I can also hear the occasional snore, so I don't think he's deeply involved in it. I have a roast of beef that I dredged up out of the freezer thawing in the drainboard in the sink. That will be tonight's supper.
I have both my "children" home with me now. Daughter has finished up university, for the most part, with just a bit more to submit online, and she left her rental place in the city. There are bags and laundry hampers littering the upstairs hall. (Don't worry, she literally went nowhere for the past few weeks, as did the family she lives with apart from the one designate who got groceries - we are not fearful of what she may have brought home with her!) Both of my babies are still snoozing in their beds. It's Sunday, it's o.k. Son has exams online this coming week as well. I will "do" Easter sometime this week now that everyone is home.

I've been on my "learn at home" site getting it all set up for the coming week. It's going better now that I know how to do a few more things. Not all students are involved, but then not all have the same support at home, as some parents are essential workers and no doubt the last thing they want to do at the end of the day is get their kids to "do work". I get it, and there is no guilt.

I've made more zucchini muffins (keep using up that frozen zucchini!) (oh, and just to share, EVERY time I type zucchini in a post, I have to look up the spelling - it just doesn't stick in my head! Do you have a word like that?) In an attempt to not go out anywhere, I learned that you can order alcohol through the LCBO website (liquor control board of Ontario) and it will be mailed to your post office. I am awaiting my order.

I ordered seeds online. Now if only the weather would become just a little bit warmer. I'm itching to get out there and rototill and get early seeds in the ground, but if I look at my forecast for the week, there are little snowflakes coming up for two days! April in Ontario. Not surprising, but not welcome.

It's a quiet time here. I am accepting of staying in and away from people and doing what needs to be done for the greater good, but I am also thinking ahead to gathering with friends, smelling barbecue, having a laugh with others, shopping leisurely and thinking about what I'd like to make, being back to my work routine and seeing people face to face, rather than on a computer screen. There are so many good things to look forward to, that putting in the hard time now will make it that much more satisfying when those good things do happen. I for one, am believing that quick tests and discovering if people have immunity will be the answer to getting us slowly, but surely out of this. I don't think we can just hang on until a vaccine becomes trusted and available. That's too far down the road. But once enough people have immunity, have developed antibodies, then we can start to come out of our little hidey holes and start to resume some normalcy, while still protecting our most vulnerable.

Have a good rest of your Sunday and week to come.

Monday, 13 April 2020

Turning it around - 80's Girl Warning!!

So... I've been on similar roller coaster as likely many other people. When I'm busy, I'm fine, but when I have to stop being busy, I can get a bit down.

Tonight after supper I kicked myself in the buttocks, went upstairs to the treadmill (ya, haven't actually done that this whole time), turned on my "workout" playlist and just walked quickly, did stupid arm movements akin to dancing while walking, lip synced like a boss, and in the end felt SO MUCH better. Why, oh why don't I do this more often? Well, I think I will.

If you need a bit of a mood boost and you are of my "generation" (i.e. you wore the big earrings, the shoulder pads, the layered jewellery ala Cyndy Lauper, and teased and sprayed your spiral perm to within an inch of your life), then enjoy. For the rest of you, don't judge.

Here is what I walked to, in this order:


Ain't No Mountain High Enough - Marvin Gaye, Tammi Terrell

This is the Day  - The The

Higher Ground - Stevie Wonder

It's Not Unusual - Tom Jones (Yes, I was thinking of the Carlton dance at the time)



I Would Die 4U - Prince  (this is NOT the one I was listening to, I've tried to find something on You Tube, but couldn't find what you would have heard on Purple Rain - I'm sure you're familiar with it though)

Faith - George Michael

Knock on Wood - Amii Stewart  (the ultimate roller skating song)

Saturday, 11 April 2020

What You Can Count On

In times of uncertainty, here are a couple of things you can count on:



Rhubarb.

Like an old friend, come back from away, rhubarb shows its pretty red and green crinkly face every spring without fail.

Spring - flowering bulbs.


Even though we had snow yesterday, these pretty little flowers still manage to soldier on.

Today, on CTV, there is a marathon of the Harry Potter movies. So many years ago, I read the first book, before the movie was even made and was completely enchanted. Today I caught the second half of The Philosopher's Stone and remembered how much I wanted a room that looked like the Gryffindor common room. I sat and watched the movie while eating my fried egg sandwich (yes, another one), and welled up at the end when Dumbledore awarded the extra points to Gryffindor and the students all cheered from their tables in the Great Hall.

Although it is cold today, the snow has melted, and this isn't unlike other Aprils we have had. All the best to all of you!




Wednesday, 8 April 2020

Wednesday, April 8, an update

First of all, thanks for all the words of encouragement as I embarked upon a whole new world of teaching.

Yes, you can teach an old dog new tricks. But old dogs learn a little more slowly, and in different ways. I can honestly say this is the most intense time I've had, the most pressure I've been under (not from my principal or even my board, just pressure) since maybe my first year of teaching. But, it's coming. Yesterday I emailed all my parents and let them know that I would be up and running for learning at home today. Within the first hour, I was fielding a number of emails from parents saying they couldn't log on and passwords wouldn't work, and so on and so forth. They were all trying, bless them, but the frustrating thing was I really didn't have much I could do to help them. I'm not the tech. person. As it turns out, using the wrong browser was the problem for some. I was able to guide them in that direction a bit.

I had a very simple little writing "assignment" set up for them and for those students who, no doubt with the help of their parents, were able to log on and write me a little message, it was so heart warming. I could hear their voices in their typed words. I even smiled at their spelling mistakes, punctuation mistakes and the fact that some still won't type the word ' I ' with a capital!

So, I've watched countless how-to videos, listened to real time webinars, emailed questions to colleagues, just muddled around myself, took gobs of notes and just stapled the whole pile together so I wouldn't lose anything in the corner of my living room that I've now turned into the world's messiest "office".

Bottom line? I'm one lucky woman.  I cannot complain at all. I am not on the front lines. Nobody in my family is sick. I am not worried about losing my job. I can't say the same for all my students' parents. I don't know everybody's situation, but I'm quite sure there are some tense households out there. So, am I working hard? You bet, but at least I'm working.

I'm sending out best wishes to all of you. Please, please stay home and don't look for loopholes to go out for "some reason". We just have to tough this out.

source

Friday, 3 April 2020

Friday April 4, 2020

I am taking five minutes to post that I have received notice that I get exactly 15 minutes to go into my classroom and only my classroom through a designated door, after washing my hands to retrieve what I think I might need from my room, then wash my hands and get the hell out of the school.
I will also be watching the premier's announcement today about the actual state of covid 19 in my province and what it could really look like if people don't smarten up.
Then I will be personally contacting every parent of every student in my class and learning how to begin the daunting task of online learning. It's a steep learning curve. I won't be posting frequently from here on in, unless it's on the weekend, or when I'm completely done for the day, whenever that will be.

Take care all.