Sunday, May 21, 2017

Seven days with kids.

Item number One.

I believe a major victory in adulthood is when faced with passive aggressive personalities you can see it, let it roll and call it out only in your own mind. I'm getting closer.

Number Two

Kid at school. Here is the picture of a kid at school a million years ago. I now teach his child who is identical.

I'd post a picture of the son but I'm not allowed and I don't really have to because they are twins. Sometimes genetics blow my mind.

Item number three. One time greathusbandbob and I went to Costa Rica. This is my favorite picture in downtown San Jose. (That's greathusbandbob in the window being a Costa Rican Ernest Hemingway) The goal now is a trip to Cuba in similarly rustic accommodations. A girl can dream.


Item the four. Right now as the school year nears its completion, another thing I really need is a repeat of the knitnightdrjustine trip to the big apple for some Chinatown, little Italy and cocktail hour in the best decor.



Finally five. One thing that is for sure on the horizon is the annual July ocean trip which, if accommodations are the measure, this will be the best ever. Seven rooms, sleeps twenty, beachfront, private pool and most importantly king size bed so there is enough room for the dog and an elevator for the luggage. The best part is that there could very well be more than twenty all running in and out, up and down, eating and grocery shopping doing the thing. And zero passive aggression.



Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Pedro y el lobo

On the mend from strep, first grade became Peter and the Wolf day. But Julian is in class and I have just enough Spanish chops to say el gato, el pato, el lobo, abuelo and with some help from a blushing five year old, el pajaro.

He was suddenly a star and the look on his face when I had some sentences that made sense instead of pieces of words put together was priceless.

And when he had the answers and kids started asking him about how to say things the look on my face was equally as priceless.

Thursday, May 04, 2017

Guano loco and I can teach myself things other than knitting.

That's not an official Spanish phrase, just one I like to use to describe the last weeks of school- they always manage to find a way to become batshit crazy.

I know we are celebrating first responders one day next week. I'm pretty sure that doesn't mean you have to call them to get them to do stuff for you the week before. Details are unreportable and confidential. Everyone is safe and fine, but there was a need. Twice. In one day. When the principal was out of the building. Also a third time would not have been inappropriate but it seemed to get handled. And none of the events were related to each other.

Greathusbandbob and I watched the movie about the mathematician called The Man Who Knew Infinity. It was a good albeit sad movie and I learned a new word. Ramanujen was an autodidact. Wikipedia says-

Generally, an autodidact is an individual who chooses the subject they will study, their studying material and the studying rhythm and time. An autodidact may or may not have formal education, and their study may be either a complement or an alternative to it.

Guess what! I am an autodidact. Today I felt stupid making verb vocabulary cards in present and past tense in Spanish. But then I thought What Would Ramanujen Do? Taking notes for the sake of taking notes seems crazy but it is one of the better ways to learn something. So I did it. Also I don't have to learn Spanish as slowly as high school French happened. I will choose my studying rhythm and time. I'm not sure how I'll know if I'm knowing it but I can understand simple sentences that I couldn't before and that's the goal so I just need to break the habitual constraints of formal education and get on with it.


Next idea- because summer is coming, the brain is relaxing, the ideas start to come. Greathusbandbob organized a forum of smart people to speak about various aspects of treatment for drug addiction. You don't need the details. Just know there was a drug pathology professor, a probation officer and a physician who made up the heart of the panel. After hearing them, I think, just like students go to other countries for foreign exchange visits, there should be a program for adults who want to go visit other jobs. I skirted this idea when visiting the accountant but now it's taking on a clearer form. Or maybe it's just more autodidactism.

In other news which is actually a revisit of old news, you can not even imagine how awesome it is to watch the faces of kids as they make music together with giant pieces of paper. They are so surprised by the power and intensity of the sound. There is at least one in every class who makes the same face that's in my head every time I hear it. And with each escalation in sound, the wonder and surprise in their faces expands. For an "offhand, maybe this will work" activity it's been a treasure trove of happy teaching and learning moments.

And finally the weekend will include teaching greathusbandbob how to use his new iPhone. Today is his birthday. And one of us needs to be grown up enough to have a cell phone.


Monday, May 01, 2017

This is my job.

There is a standard "let's make a rainstorm" that kids at camp and kids with clever music teachers do. It involves doing the "wave" across the room but instead of hands in the air, its body percussion (snap, clap, pat and variations) building from silence to a big storm.

It was a part of my plan today with the words "giant paper?" penciled next to it. Not prepared to really go there, I walked into the teachers lounge and saw a giant pile of ugly orange poster board for giveaway. If creativity is putting two "knowns" together to make a new known then I win today.


We didn't have a thunderstorm, we had hurricane winds with practically on top of us thunder (when they started kicking and punching the paper). It was awesome.


Sunday, April 30, 2017

Soon it will be the weekend every day

Because I skipped the Zumba last Thursday to cut the grass, I decided to make it a step filled day by going for one of the long walks of a few summers ago. Except I forgot to pay attention to the sun and found myself near heat exhaustion climbing up a 45* hill at noon on this sunny day. The neighbor's grown daughter spotted my distress and drove me the last 500 steps home. Note to self, check the sun.

Other than the rescue car, this was my favorite thing on the walk-


I can never remember the name (much like I always forget the word tortilla and Christopher Walken's name) and the guy getting in his car in front of the house eyed me suspiciously as I photographed it. I'm going to guess that the only thing I could look potentially guilty of was sneaking into the house and collapsing in exhaustion. Step total was 7,000+ , so there's that.

When you order your meal and cocktail in Spanish, somethimes they bring you an extra house tequila at the end of the meal. And it is delicious. And they realized your Spanish wasn't completely rehearsed when you say "duermo ahora."

The student teacher with no classroom management skills has finished her placement. Every now and then it's good for those kids to experience a little less than the best. Then they are grateful when I return and we all like each other a little more.


Thursday, April 27, 2017

Healthy choices - not so much

So we spent a lot of running around time making ourselves eligible for a $10 discount/mo at the local gym. When it came time to sign our portion we were asked to promise to go an hour a day three days a week, keep a food journal, talk on the phone with a nutritionist. All good things but not the autonomy we wanted to give up. Had I thought of drawing the food for the food journal then, it would have been hard to resist not doing it just to turn in pictures instead of words.

Greathusbandbob bought some Ben and jerry's and it called my name. On the other hand I didn't eat the Twix bar in my drawer because I didn't want to have to confess to it.



One thing I've come to realize about drawing is that you can't judge the quality accurately when you're close ( both in time and distance). So far many of the things did not end up looking as bad as they felt.


Wednesday, April 26, 2017

As promised.

Yesterday's food-


Today's inspiration- lots of dog portraits. though the instructor says use still lifes not already drawn images-


My view from the inside-