It’s true – I’ve taught schoolchildren for real money. Several times, actually. Granted, the pay wasn’t all that great since I was merely responsible for educating the future of America, but I proudly wore the teacher’s mantle. Now that I crunch the numbers I see my first year’s students have crested thirty, voted in a number of elections, and likely have families of their own.
Holy crap, I’m old.
I’ve found that you never really lose that teacher voice, though, and it’s come in handy in my second (third? fourth?) career as a frequent flyer volunteer in the elementary school. But as for today’s post, let’s start looking at those teacher adventures, shall we?
Over the years I’ve had a bit of a love/hate relationship with my kitchen. For ages it’s been a place of drudgery, a room I’d merely tolerate as I tried in vain to appreciate the art of cooking. After all, what wasn’t to love? There are whole shows dedicated to the joys of cooking…an entire industry predicated upon the love people have for preparing food.
So who was I to hate the kitchen?
Be it my place or not, though, it’s how I felt for years. Which is why I’m positively bumfuzzled by the turn of events in our house these days.
Oh my gosh, you guys. Are you completely sick of listening to me talk about food? This isn’t even a food blog – me, writing a food blog? snort! – yet here I am yammering on about what I can eat, what I can’t, and the bizarre life changes that have befallen me at forty-seven. My instagram feed now consists almost entirely of a) adorable photos of my dogs and b) pictures of food.
Because why wouldn’t my instagram followers be fascinated by my dietary adventures? Omelette with kale and mozzarella? Pecan crusted salmon? YUM.
It’s been two years since I woke to a day without my mom. Two years since that jolt of knowing her journey here was over and the days of quietly holding her hand had ended.
It’s been two years, but my heart and head are still at odds.
I can’t believe she’s gone. I feel that reverberate in my bones then, close on its heels, Mom was finally released from her pain and is in heaven…it seems other people take comfort in that when their loved ones die, but I don’t feel overwhelming joy when I say it. Maybe that makes me a bad Christian. Maybe it makes me conflicted. Maybe it just means I miss my mom. Either way it leads me back to I can’t believe she’s gone.
Moments still take my breath away. That scene in the movie Wonder – the one where flashbacks with grandma reveal how close the granddaughter felt to her – knocked me off my feet. I found myself frozen in the theater, acutely aware of Bear beside me and the ache I feel when I think of her and my mom.
It’s been two years, but it feels like just yesterday.
Only one more day before I roll into 47 which naturally means I’m thinking about my halfway-there To Do List. As BrightSide kindly pointed out to Bear recently we’ve pretty much reached the midpoint…his commentary on average life spans and how we’re on the other side of that mountain so utterly horrified Bear, she’ll have fodder for years of counseling.
Don’t say we never did anything for our kids.
Life is about celebrating all the things, don’t you think? Big, little, everywhere in between – if we don’t do the happy dance as often as possible, well, then we’re missing out on a lot of chances to dance. And I’m all about some dancing. Just ask my kids.
So I don’t wanna brag, but…
1. Nine times out of ten I can securely wrap the cord around my hair dryer without hitting myself in the head. A 90% success rate? I’ll take that.
2. It’s been at least six months since I’ve had to induce vomiting in my dog. Knock on wood. Seriously, everybody – you know Gracie – knock on wood right now. Thanks.
3. I finally learned how to make a hard boiled egg. Which means there’s hope for anybody in the kitchen.
I’m not surprised people feel a special fondness for Christmas trees. They’re beautiful and often wrapped in a lifetime of fond memories, family and friends and nostalgia galore. Some of them are actually gorgeous – grown up trees with a theme and coordinated colors, ones that make you stop and gaze in awe.
My tree isn’t a grown up tree, never has been, but I surely do love it.
Slow down. Be where your feet are. Breathe. Be present in the moment.
Be still and listen to your heart.
Six days of immersion and then BOOM – reentry.