Monday, January 19, 2009

Irons in the Fire

This week I had too many irons in the fire. Monday I was acting principal for half the day. Tuesday and Wednesday I was still acting principal. Tuesday I had to drive to Cadotte to pick up diploma exams so that our students could write them and hopefully pass Grade 12 this year. For some reason, they were never sent to our school so I had to arrange them to be sent to Peace and then I had to arrange for a rendezvous in Cadotte with my principal to recieve them. So I was on the road for a good 4 and 1/2 hours. The things that I do for my students.

Thursday I was in Slave for math meetings and Friday I was presenting our math program to other teachers. Yes me presenting. It was great fun.

So in an effort of celebration, here are some things to celebrate.
1. My students did awesome on the written part of the diploma exam. They got things out of the picture that I missed. They all wrote something in all 3 essays. I am SOOO proud of those 5 students. I wanted to hug and kiss them all but that would have got wierd.

2. I had a really nice time in Slave Lake reflecting on the progress that some of my students are making in math. The first year of the program, I had 2 students pass a diagnostic test. Now I have only two students not pass the same task. It is very good.

3. I had a really nice time in Slave Lake hanging out with my fellow presenters. We went out for a liesurely dinner, we laughed, we planned.

4. I loved presenting to other teachers. It was fun sharing my "expertise".

There now I feel better. My anger at other situations has dissipated slightly. However, looking at my celebrations, I need a change. Everything in my lifeis school related right now and I find that very tiring.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Plus ca change

It was the first week back at school. Or was it. It didn't seem like it. I shouldn't complain though because the chaos of this week has been caused by the pain of others. As I mentioned in an earlier post, there was a death in the community prior to Christmas holidays. They had the funeral the first day after Christmas break.

When I returned to Trout, there was another funeral on the Saturday. An elder that passed away on Christmas eve. On Monday I returned to school and had very few students. The students that I did have were exhausted. Not surprising after Christmas holidays. Then they informed me that they were up all night at the wake. "The wake!!" I exclaimed, "The funeral already happened." But no, there was another death on New Years Eve as well. Both of these deaths were elders of the community but still the pain of three funerals in three weeks in a community of 400 . . . My heart aches.

So Monday was the wake. Tuesday was the funeral. Wednesday all of the students went home at 11:00 because of propane smells in the school. Thursday was a staff meeting (all the students left at 2:00). Friday was the typical half day. It feels like school hasn't really started.

So . . . in the effort of celebration . . .
I took down my Christmas decorations and saw that my house looked very barren. So I sorted through for stars and hearts and red and made a Valentine's display. Me celebrating Valentine's Day. Things are dire indeed. I normally wear black on that day.
I invited myself to another teachers for supper last night and then pulled out the Wii. Guitar Hero and Winter Sports equals a good time. It was good to laugh with fellow teachers and not talk about school at all.
It looks like I will be celebrating my next birthday in New York City. I find that VERY exciting.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Past and Future

It is that time of year again to reflect on the past and plan for the future. I don't know if it is my mood now but I don't really feel that this year was really spectacular in terms of excitement and new things learned. I feel like it has been rather ho-hum, same old same old. Regardless, here are some things that stand out:

1. Travelling to Regina with my cousin, Sara, to see Grandma. It was a very fun trip - about as fun as Regina can get.

2. Living with my sister and her family for the summer. Never a dull moment.

3. Travelling to Ottawa spur of the moment to attend my grand father's funeral. Bittersweet time. It was sweet to see family but sad to go on such an occasion.

4. Learning about wine in the Okagnagan Valley with former Trout Lake cronies. We camped, we played games and I lost at Trivial Pursuit again.

I want this year to stand out more than last year. I want it to be more exciting. So here are some random goals for the year.

1. Change. It is time to move on, to find a new direction, to take another step in the path of my life. God grant me wisdom.

2. To learn how to smile with my eyes again. I seem to have forgotten how.

3. Celebrate. Celebrate the small, the large, the joyous, the ordinary. Cultivate gratitude and contentment.

I am not sure if there is a way to measure these goals quantitatively but really the question will become:
1. Am I still in Trout Lake?
2. Can I smile both inside and out?