As a tribute to teachers and our students everywhere, here's my attempt at that oh so cliched essay....
As usual, I try to set goals during my summer vacation so that I feel like I've accomplished something other than sitting on my rear becoming one with the television. My goals for this summer were:
1) Read the 60-plus books I checked out of our school's library so that I could read them BEFORE the kids stole them this coming year.
2) Clean out my storage area/shoebox apartment of items that have never seen the light of day--despite the fact that I just had to have them when I brought them home with me.
3) Have a garage sale to get rid of said items so that I could actually have a little spending cash to use for playtime this summer.
4) Read all of the new books being released this summer.
5) Scrapbook all of the "little projects" that I have waiting in bags around the shoebox apartment to clear off some room in the bookcases, corners, and closet.
6) RELAX! (Meaning--no alarm clock and sitting by the pool since the beaches are insane during the summer months.)
Needless to say, I did not accomplish one goal of mine this summer. For those of you that know me, this is a complete and utter failure, and I've been battling with considering myself a failure for not accomplishing this goal. In order to do this, I've had to look back and consider the reasons why I did not complete what I set out to complete.
Here's a brief (Ha!) listing of the things I did accomplish or had to work through this summer:
1. Teaching my mother scrapbooking techniques so that she can start working on her mounds of pictures.
2. Going the see Pirates of the Caribbean III with my friend April and her parents.
3. Going to the dentist for the initial exam--especially since I haven't been to the dentist in two years. (Hey--I've been moving a lot!)
4. Read Maximum Ride 3 by James Patterson.
5. Getting my teeth cleaned at the dentist. (Good news: He said my teeth were perfect! He also argued with me that I had to have had braces when I was younger in order for my teeth to be straight--I've never had braces and always felt left out when my friends had them when I was younger because I wanted the cool wax stuff and the mini rubber bands too. My dentist thinks I'm lying.)
6. Working at pH-Farms setting up another 10 acres for trees. I think we only worked about 22 days, but they were grueling 8-14 hour days in the extreme heat of Florida--with NO shade!
7. Creating the website for pH-Farms. (I REALLY need to update it and make it more presentable....I'm working on it.)
8. Started a mini scrapbook of all of the cats I've owned in my life and watched Disney movies on the computer while working.
9. Worked at the local Scrapbooking store as they were setting up for a huge trade show.
10. Watched my older niece's Final School Program and Awards Night in which she was presented with the award for A Servant's Heart. We proceeded to have a Slumber Party with just the two of us and Madison.
11. My niece and I then visited my parents as hey were at Innisbrook for a tree convention. We went swimming, had a BBQ at Sunset Park, and then crashed on the fold-out bed before I took her home the next day.
12. My friend April took me on a shopping spree at Westshore Mall to get ready for a job interview with a local college. We were at the mall for over 5 HOURS! I HATE SHOPPING!
13. Interviewed with the local college, found out they wanted to hire me for more than evening classes and had to turn them down since I need insurance and would have had to take more classes while teaching at the college level. I also had lunch with one of my friends that works at the college at a great little tea house in Dade City. I also visited my grandma on the way home from the interview to see how she's doing and to see how the renovations were going on my Aunt's garage apartment.
14. My carpets were cleaned in the shoebox since, for the first time in my life I am not moving, and resigned my lease!
15. Had lunch with April at M.J. Barley Hoppers so she could de-brief me about her interview with another school in the district. I also saw several gorgeous guys--one of which my mouth dropped open when I saw him. (Yep--it was an attractive look for me.)
16. Planned a surprise birthday party for my Mom with my dad and my aunt.
17. Took my family out for lunch at Outback for Father's Day. (My grandfather threatened to chase me around the restaurant if I didn't give him the bill, but I run faster than he does!)
18. Blogged about some of my adventures. (See the highlighted numbers in this post for links.)
19. Met with the other HASLMS (Hillsborough Association of School Library Media Specialists) Board members at Barnes and Noble to discuss this coming year's events. (I was voted in as the Treasurer this year--more on that later.)
20. Rushed from pH-Farms with my dad to see my Mom who was admitted into the hospital while we were working. (My mom does NOT go to the hospital for anything, so we knew it was serious if she went.) She was diagnosed with Vertigo--although we later found out that her blood pressure rising caused the vertigo to kick in. She was out from work several days because she was still so dizzy and drugged up from the hospital.
21. Brought my Mom food to check on her after being in the hospital. I also introduced her to my friend April, since April and I were going to hang out at the movies. (I think Mom was so drugged that she doesn't really remember meeting her--oh well.)
22. Watched the new Nancy Drew movie with April at our local theatre. (If you're a Nancy Drew fan--you'll be disappointed.)
23. Converged with family to hear about my cousins and their antics when they went to Europe. (I'm STILL jealous!)
24. Met with last year's HASLMS Treasurer at Borders to go over monthly reports and books.
25. Tried to calm my parents down after their house was broken in to during broad daylight!
26. Spent the 4th of July at my grandma's house having lunch with my grandparents and my aunt, as well as helping plan logistics of garage apartment and planning for the craft room area.
27. Called the car insurance company about a discount they were offering for people who have graduated from college. (It's not offered for residents in the state of Florida and was accidentally mailed to me---GRRRRR......)
28. Helped my aunt go shopping for a brand new computer system and an all-in-one printer. She found one within 3 hours AND it's better than mine! (Her old system was built over 13 years ago...)
29. Met with HASLMS Committees to plan out our Professional Day on August 14. (Somehow I was nominated to plan everything and other people will just help. GRRRRR...)
30. Went to cell phone carrier and complained about being charged overage minutes when I've NEVER gone over before. Changed my cell phone plan to include more minutes.
31. Took my computer back to Computer Corner since the CD/DVD drive as not being read by the computer--again. The really tall guy checked it out and saw that I have a loose wire strip in my tower. He also showed me how to "fix" it next time. (This happens every time I move my computer around.)
32. Brought my oldest niece to my shoebox to spend the night and go swimming the next day! When even watched some great movies and cooked lunch and breakfast!
33. Went to the midnight release Of Harry Potter #7 at Borders.
34. Read Harry Potter #7 within 24 hours! (A new record for me.)
35. Watched Harry Potter #5 at the theatre with April and her parents. (I actually like this movie better than the book....hmmmmm....great director!)
36. Met with one of my former students from TEXAS and her parents to go over schooling choices in this county. They just moved over here and are overwhelmed by the choices of schools. (Abilene only had 2 high schools...we have over 20!)
37. Joined a Weight-Loss program and went over the kit information for diet and exercise. It's a complete lifestyle change and is supposed to really work. (Where have we heard that before?)
38. Helped my Aunt move into her garage apartment. (She actually hired a moving company, but she was really worried about this move and so I went over to keep her from freaking out over all of the little details.)
39. Waited in anticipation of having a double recliner "couch" being delivered from my grandma's house to my shoebox by the same moving company that moved my aunt. I have a couch now! (I haven't had one in over 5 years--it's always been the floor. Madison's excited over her new scratching post too.)
40. Hooked up my aunt's computer system so that she could get Verizon's FIOS Internet. (It's SO much faster than Bright House's Broadband--I'm jealous!)
41. Got a haircut--finally!
42. Got a pedicure! I LOVE Nadine! She even gave me a foot massage. I had VERY happy feet (until I went to work at pH-Farms the next day--bye-bye pedicure)!
43. Met with my friend Adrienne for breakfast at First Watch. We try to get together More often since she moved back from Illinois and I moved back from Texas, but it seems to work out where we only see each other about every 6 months. (Great food at First Watch!)
44. Went to dinner with my sister and my youngest niece from Washington!
45. Celebrated my youngest niece's birthday at The Florida Aquarium--she's three now and VERY mature for her age! (I think she's going into acting because she has lines from movies memorized verbatim--even obscure lines and she just turned 3!)
46. Read Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer. I tried to listen to the soundtrack on her website as I read, but I guess everyone else in the world did the same thing so it was down. Oh well--it was kind of a bittersweet book. I know she plans to write Edward's story next, but I don't really care about his life. Maybe because I'm still trying to come to terms with this book...I don't know.
47. Went to a workshop on How to Teach within 50 minutes instead of 90. Okay, so I really went because I was getting paid for it, but I did get to meet some of the new teachers and I was able to catch up on all of the latest gossip from my friends.
48. Gave a brief library orientation to the new teachers at our school. I was supposed to be giving tours around campus and my counter-part giving the orientation, but she wasn't available so I had to do it. (Nothing like finding these things out at the last minute....oh well, I'll get to hand them things later.)
49. Checking in with Panera and trying to collect orders from ALL of the Media Specialists in our county. The deadline was this past Friday, although I found out Thursday afternoon that the Tech Specialists were invited too, so I had to rush invite them on Friday and I've been collecting orders for what seems like hours! AHAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH! (At least it will be over on Tuesday!)
50. Putting out the fire that my dryer decided to try and cause LATE one Friday evening. Great--now I have to figure out how to do laundry without the dryer because I need clean underwear! Grrrrrrrrrr......anyone know any dryer repair people in this area? (Would it be cheaper to just buy a new one?)
As you can see from my list, I've been a little busy this summer. While I didn't accomplish the things on my original list, I did do something that was even more important--cultivated relationships. I also read most of the newly released books, so I guess I almost finished one goal. Cest la vie!