Saturday, June 26, 2010

If you want God to laugh, make a plan

(The events of this entry took place on Friday, June 25, 2010. I just didn't get to finish writing about it earlier.)

I had it all figured out last night. I would take Sheila for our walk a little earlier than usual so I could wake up Henry early enough to take him for a haircut and get him to Youtheatre on time. I would then run errands with ruthless efficiency and get home in time to Get Things Done.

Had I listened carefully, I might have heard some Almighty snickering. It took me ten minutes past the alarm going off to realize that the music I heard was not, in fact, part of my dream, but rather the alarm itself. I fed the beasts, then got back into bed with a mug of coffee. I closed my eyes for five minutes and woke up about 45 minutes later. Oopsie.

These days, my walks start out slow, then increase in level of "briskness." I try to keep the pace for a few blocks, slow down a little, then cool down for the last couple of blocks. If Sheila insists on sniffing at something, I usually walk in place while she sniffs. It doesn't get to me because she's fairly selective about stopping.

Not this morning. No, Princess Fluffybutt had to sniff at every single blade of grass, tree trunk, and telephone pole along the route. It was difficult to maintain my patience as I reminded myself that she wasn't doing it deliberately. At least, I didn't think so. In addition, I had something that felt like the second cousin to a shin splint in my left leg, and I was having trouble picking up the pace.

Then the worm happened. It was making its way along the sidewalk,  part of it covered with grit, and it looked unhappy. I wanted to rescue it, but the thought of touching an earthworm gives me the hot and cold collywobbles. Seriously, if I am phobic about anything, it is worms. I can't stand touching them, especially par cooked. I found a leaf to pick it up and put it on a shady dirt patch. It took way too long.

Once home, I roused the boy and dragged him to see Barber Bob. He wanted to put it off until the weekend, but BB is not open on weekends. Mr. Ibrahim cut Henry's hair, and he did a great job (and gave him a shave), but it took a lot longer than I expected, and then I made a few driving errors, so Henry was late.

I headed up to Sheetz because I was low on gas, and just as I turned onto Dillerville Road, the car gave that hesitant heave that means I'm about to run out of gas. Fortunately, I was practically at Sheetz, so was able to avert disaster. Okay, it wouldn't have been as bad as that time I had to walk half a mile to Turkey Hill, but still.

I got nothing else done except to take the cat out into the back yard for a while, and I read part of Reading Ladders: Leading Students from Where They Are to Where We'd Like Them to Be by Teri Lesesne. This is a brief but excellent book on helping students become stronger, more adventurous readers. I have found a lot of ideas I want to use in my own classroom, when I have one, and I'm going to use this summer to refresh my knowledge of young adult literature. Right now I'm also reading Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. It's a big fat Southern Gothic tribute to Twilight. Maybe that's not fair. But right now, it's one of those books I want to read and at the same time, it makes me restless.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Here we go

After 3 1/2 years in which my mom died, I got laid off from my job of 17 years as a librarian, I started to substitute teach, and I went back to school for post baccalaureate certification, I am finally certified to teach English in grades 7-12. In addition, I have an instructional add on certification in Communications and one pending in Library Science K-12. Go me. I just don't know if I'll be able to find a job.

After a day of hopeless self pity and tears, I decided to just pull it together and try to be proactive, not just in my job search but in other areas as well. Included on the list was to start reactivating this blog to keep a record of what and how I'm doing.

The areas are getting into shape; finding a job; writing YA literature; and getting the house in order. There may be something else, but I don't recall.

Lately, I've been walking Sheila for about 2 miles a day. Today was a shorter woods walk, but I won't be doing that again for a while. I became a walking smörgåsbord for mosquitoes, and instead of taking a dip in the river, Sheila rolled her head and ears in the fishy, sticky mud. Ew. We went home and I gave her a bath.

Tomorrow, we begin to get on a routine of some kind. I'm going to blitz the scriptorium (computer/office area) tomorrow so that it's just a pleasanter place to work and see what I can get done.