Friday, August 27, 2010

Coffee Company 8/27: Spinning Plates

Catching up today with my Company Girls.  I've missed you!
I know that if you've read me at all (or if you know me IRL), you know I'm always busy.  In fact, I don't even really like to say the word busy, because it's kind of lost it's meaning.  Saying I'm super busy right now is almost meaningless.  But regardless, I'm...

...Pretty sure this is me.

Okay, not really, but it's a pretty good analogy of how I'm feeling.

The new school year has begun (we're at the end of the 2nd week), and while I have not yet dropped a plate (that I know of), they are spinning fast and I'm working hard to keep them in the air.

What, you ask, are my plates, this year?

1. My three in-person Spanish 2 classes and my one in-person Spanish 3 class.  Planning, grading, interacting.

2. My one online Spanish 2 class. Planning, creating content from scratch each week (audio, video, assignments, lessons, etc.).  Grading, interacting.  Yes, we do have to have interactions even with online school - I have a "Class Live" session each week where we all simultaneously log in and video, audio, or text chat and I explain things through a "whiteboard" we can all see.  And we email A LOT.

3. My one don't-get-paid-for-it-but-still-have-to-plan-it-and-grade-it Independent Study Spanish 4 class with three students.  Never have taught Spanish 4, so I'm creating that curriculum as I go, and they come in during my planning period every other day for a real class.

4. My Student Council class, which involves planning of leadership lessons and activities, getting ready for our big leadership retreat next weekend, and, of course, coordinating and attending the events we put on at the school and help at.  I used to have a co-sponsor, and we did all the work together, but this year I'm on my own.  It's going great, by the way - I love the kids - but it is a lot to think of.

5. Youth group sponsor.  I had taken a year and a half off to do grad school, but got sucked back in when our youth pastor starting doing small groups, which I really resonate with.  That means Sunday nights, when I would love to just rest and gear up for the next week, I go to church and interact.

6. Club sponsor for a group called Friends of Rachel, planning and attending meetings.

7. Needing to keep my house in some sort of order.

8. Would love to find time to be healthy, exercise, cook.  (see my post at to know read my failure at this.

9. Need to spend time with my family, as my parents are dealing with some really hard stuff.

10. Still taking care of my horse after he had impaled himself in May - it's going better, but he needs to be walked at least every other day.

11. Being in a small group where we're reading Francis Chan's "The Forgotten God" and doing life together.

12. Discipling two high school students from church, separately.

13. Spending time with the students I've had in previous years who hang out in my room at lunch and during all breaks because they need me and love me.

14. Oh, and it might be nice to see my husband once in a while.

I'm hoping that once I get into a better routine, I will find a little balance..... but for now....

Here's to not dropping any plates!

What is on your plate in this season? 

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Love - Hate

Rarely do I entertain a love-hate relationship with anything - I'm more of a one-way-or-the-other kind of a gal (and I'm hard pressed to think of many things I hate...... it's more like I just feel strongly about them).

But today I recognized one significant love-hate relationship in my life.

I love-hate the first day of school.

I love it, you see, because after the summer, I'm ready to start teaching again.  I love teaching.  I love the first day because I see a lot of my super-cool high schoolers as they come up and are excited to see me, no matter whether or not they love Spanish.  I love it because soon, we'll get into the groove and really have a class-bond and be having fun while learning.

I hate it, you know, because on the first day kids stare at each other and you with this sort of dead-still tired from summer-I don't really like school look.  There is this weird silence and awkwardness accompanied by some sneaky whispers of the few people who know each other.  And I hate it when you don't know any of your students, because then the rapport isn't there and they aren't quite ready to embrace my kooky-ness just yet.... and all of my classes are new-to-me-students this year.

But I love it, because tomorrow we'll jump into things.  We'll start to get to know each other and laugh and be silly and be serious and work and play.  It'll be good. 

Oh, and I hate how exhausting the first day is!  Whew, I'm tired.  Thank the Lord for a comfy bed and hopefully a good night of sleep tonight.

What do you love-hate

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Getting Going

I keep thinking today is Monday... I guess that's because my schedule has been all screwed up. Last week I went to our state Student Council camp, which was four intense, jam-packed, emotionally charged, laughter and tear-filled awesome days.  They were so packed, though, that each day felt like at least two days.  I felt like I was at camp for at least 7 or 8 days, then.  Saturday, then, my sister and I went up to a huge music festival called Heavenfest (nearly 100 bands, outdoors, noon to midnight).  Fun, but not a normal schedule thing.  And then yesterday, the real Monday, I went to a water park with our junior high and high school youth groups, spending the day riding the attractions and lounging along the lazy river.

So today feels like Monday.  But it's an okay Monday, I think.

I do have two meetings at school this week, but my main focus is going to be getting my house ready for the school year, because if I start out with it in disarray or dirty, it will be a bad thing.  I mean, a bad thing.  So rather than consider how bad, I'm going to get to cleaning and organzing.  Not in that order, probably.  I've made a list - which rooms I'll do which days - so I just need to get off the blog and go get started.

But first, this week I also want to jump start the other parts of my schedule that are super important - time with my Maker, and time getting exercise.  If I don't start those off on the right foot, it will be hard to get started later.  All summer I've thought, "surely I can get those things under control since I have more flexibility in my life during the summer"- but I guess I do better with some structure in my schedule, because I haven't gotten them figured out yet.

So here's to a schedule this week - may I stick to it and start with a happy house (which makes me happy and sane) and healthy habits.
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