Tuesday, September 10, 2013



      For me this is a great metaphor for my life.  If you think of how small your feet were when you were young, and compare them with how large and calloused they are now....what a difference.  The same could be said for my own knowledge and experience.  I took a country (visit) survey - I've been to approximately 40 different countries.  I've lived in about six for any length of time.  I would hope that gives me a global perspective.  My husband jokes that we should be citizens of the world - not of individual countries with arbitrary borders.  

       When I was young, my favorite shoes were my ballet shoes.  I was light, skinny, and agile.  I would like to think my mind and understanding of the world were of the same.  Some could consider that naivete, but I choose not to.  

     As a teenager I experimented with what can only be described as army boots that were swapped with high heels or cowboy boots.  Again, I believe my mind was trying to hunker down and protect itself from outside influences while at the same time trying to attract the opposite sex.   I believe most teenagers are like that - trying to be their own person, but also trying to find their way in this crazy world.  

        Fast forward to now.  I'm a wife, a mother, and even a grandmother, but I refuse to wear "grandma" shoes - the ugly orthopedic ones.  I wear fancy sandals, and sports shoes.  I even wear an occasional high heel.  
        How does all this relate to my teaching?  I would like to think that I change my shoes to fit my needs - and I change my teaching methods and styles to fit my needs and more importantly to fit my student's needs i.e., what I am able to do or not do (like wear high heels) [or to get my students to study when they don't want to].  I can be practical (sneakers) when I need to like when we are pushing for an exam etc.  Or, I can be fun and impractical (high heels) on a special occasion.
       I think I need to be as flexible as possible.  I need to be able to change shoes - sometimes in the middle of the lesson.  I miss my ballet shoes, but I have been known to bust a move in the class room.  
       For me, I think that I must realize what shoes my students are wearing - flats, heels, vans, high top sneakers - and still be able to get such a diverse group to gel right from the first class.  
      Occasionally someone will stumble (my middle name should be grace because I fall so much), but it is my job and my pleasure to help pick them up, dust them off and send them on their merry way.  
      One could argue that in the future we may not need to walk to do anything so we won't need shoes, but I can't see women giving up their Manolo Blahniks anytime soon!  
      I as a teacher, need to remember that my student wear many shoes and that even if they show up in army boots - they are "my" students and they won't wear them forever!  

Monday, September 2, 2013

Candy Crush and/or Life


As I mark another year on this planet, I thought I should make a comment about my time here. I also thought I would combine my thoughts with my obsession of the moment – Candy Crush. They are both:
- not easy
- harder as you go along, but just as fun, even more so as you know what to expect
- it takes a bit of luck (but I believe luck is created)
- you always need a little help from friends
- takes planning, fore thought. If you don’t plan ahead, you will get a long, but you won’t progress as far or as fast as possible
- when you combine (meet) the right candy (or people) wonderful things can happen

Candy Crush and Life:
striped candy (can only go in one direction) We all know people who are like this, stiff
double striped (can go vertical, or horizontal, but only one line) People who are a tiny bit flexible, but not good outside their comfort zone
a wrapped candy (this explodes not once but twice) A lot like me – could go off at any time, and then watch out, because once the fuse it lit….
a striped and a wrapped candy – this wipes out three rows vertically, and horizontally. This is when someone is having a really bad day.
two wrapped candy – this is even bigger than the previous one. I call this a nuclear meltdown. Thank goodness this doesn’t happen very often
sprinkled ball – it eliminates one candy color from the board. You can only dream of getting these in quantities. I would like to take out certain people – did I say that out loud?
two sprinkled balls – when you find that special someone it takes out the whole world (board). I have met my sprinkled candy, and he is the best!
jelly – most of the time you must hit the space twice before it disappears. Life can be like that as well, you must keep doing something over and over until you get it right.
sucker – sometimes you must take a sucker (sledge hammer) to life and knock the crap out of something
chocolate – can be very tasty but in the game it takes over and covers all the spaces. Life can be like that sometimes, when things start to take over and you just don’t think you can take back your life and then wham - it's all clear again only to have to fight the damn chocolate again and again. Did I mention that I'm addicted to chocolate now?
bomb – sometimes we just simply run out of move (time). Sometimes we get lucky and get a little more time, sometimes life just explodes all over us. Your just going along minding your own business and then boom, you've exploded if you haven't paid attention.

But I think I have learned that no matter how, or how long you play the game, it’s the point that you’re playing that matters! You need to enjoy every minute – whether you are losing or winning doesn’t matter, you’re here! So go out and have a great day no matter who you are, or where you are! That is my birthday wish for everyone!