Here’s the doodle from January 2.
This year I am going to do something different. Instead of one year-long goal, I am going to do 12 month long goals in order to add more living to each of the days of my life. Some of these I will document daily. Some I may not. You are welcome to adventure with me…or just check in occasionally to see what in the world I am up to.
For January, I am going to draw a doodle a day. I am on day three and doodle three so far…we will see how many days I get through For inspiration, I will be using the 642 Things to Draw book. If you happen by my house please take a few minutes and doodle a little bit.
Today is the the last day of my 30th year. Tomorrow a new day and a new year for me!
Goodbye…regrets about what I should have done and didn’t
Hello…opportunities to regret some things I have done
Goodbye…sitting and laying
Hello…standing and walking
Goodbye…not leaving time for things I love
Hello…blogging, quilting, gardening
Goodbye… staying up too late
Hello…a reasonable bedtime
Goodbye…dating guys who work at Little Ceasers
Hello…dating someone with benefits (the health care kind
Goodbye… waiting for life to happen
Hello… making things happen in life
Goodbye… letting my frustration with other people and their incompetence affect my days
Hello… taking care of my circus and my monkeys
Goodbye… flipping my amygdala
Goodbye… half listening when I’m with people
Hello… putting down my phone and being present
Goodbye… spending money on things
Hello… spending money on experiences
Goodbye… anger at the political system with no action
Hello… meaningful actions in causes I believe in
Goodbye… being scared to fail at new things
Hello… laughing when I fail and succeeding at some new things
I had a long weekend. I took Friday off and took some time to reflect. There have been some things that have happened lately that have reiterated the brevity, fragility, and fleeting nature of the life….more specifically the depth of my life. No one can possibly know the length of their life but I am in control of how I live the depth of my life. Today I am choosing to be grateful…I am choosing gratitude over self-pity, anger, and resentment.
Here is a short list of things I am grateful for today:
-Students who are excited to learn
-The jacaranda and yellow blooming trees (still trying to figure out the name)
-Friends who are positive
-Friends who give me gut and heart checks when I need them
-Being able to buy healthy foods
-Lola the bearded dragon
-Frozen cookie dough
-Fresh laundry smell
-My girl scout troop
-Fans that oscilate
-Having lunch prepared
-Mark and his generosity
-Having 6 more weeks with these kids
-Mindy Kaling’s new book
-Clean car (I would be grateful if mine was clean)
-My first tomato of the summer
-Knitted animals and gnomes
-Poppies and plumaria
I have been struggling lately. I know it’s hard to imagine that someone was effervescent and enjoyable as me would struggle with a syndrome like DGAF. For those of you who I have vented to, complained to, whined to, or just made mumbling sounds at as I walked away from….I’m sorry. My therapist says that I need to let go of things that I cannot control because negative feelings like frustration, anger, and bitterness happen because I am trying to control things that I can’t. I would agree with her…and add on that I also then feel shame and embarrassment for feelings such feelings because the person I want to be and the person I am are two very different people. So….here’s a list of things that I hate AND things I have no control over. As I write them down…I’m letting go of what I cannot change and forgiving myself for the things that I could change but am too lazy or too tired to change.
– The Koch Brothers….I know they are the boogey-men of the Democratic party but I hate them. I hate that they can buy elections like kids buy pokemon cards…gotta catch them all.
-Climate-change deniers, you are bastards and will burn in a fire furnace…of course that furnace is our only planet that we are destroying so you will probably both burn in a fiery furnace and then freeze like a human-popsicle. Both of these fates you deserve…and you’re taking the rest of us with you. It’s not like we have another Earth waiting in the wings for when we decimate this one.
-Teachers who alternately don’t care enough to do their best for their students and then also have martyr syndrome because they are doing such good work….you know by helping “these” kids.
-People who text, then I text back in less than 10 seconds, then they don’t text back for hours. I KNOW YOU CAN’T PUT YOUR PHONE AWAY THAT FAST! I HAVE SPEEDY THUMBS!!!!!
-Parents who put their weaves, nails, colored contacts, and booty shorts ahead of getting their kids more than one uniform or food. Add that to parents who yell at me while they are yelling at someone else on the phone (you can’t afford two shirts for your kid but you have an iPhone!) Oh in this case…it’s actually the same parent.
-Politicians who give breaks to corporations worth billions of dollars but then freak out about raising the minimum wage or leaving snap benefits at the same level…It’s unbelievable that some politicians work so hard at keeping the poor poor.
-Duke Energy. You are like if the Koch brothers and Darryl Issa had a hate child and then it systematically poisoned the southern half of the United States…but also bought of the entire state of North Carolina and half of DC so you didn’t have to be accountable for it.
-The nut-zos in the NRA. I get it….you want to keep your guns. I’m from Wyoming…I get it. However, that doesn’t mean that you should get to buy a bazooka or a AK47 without showing ID or some sort of background check. I mean the kid in PA who used a knife to go on a rampage hurt a lot of people but didn’t kill any…. imagine if he had a gun….it would have been Sandy Hook or Columbine or Virigina Tech or ________ (Insert name of any one of the 44 school shootings since Newtown). At this rate I deserve combat pay just for teaching 2nd grade. Let’s look at gun reform in a logical and rational way…we need an systematic overhaul of how we help people with mental illness, we need to provide more support to kids who are outsiders to get them into a community, we also need to have a way to keep guns away from people who are not stable.
-The almost complete ignoral of the homeless problems facing urban kids. We are not doing right by them as a society. I see them show up in my class looking hollow-eyed and deflated at 7! Then just as quickly as they come…they disappear again. Where did they go? Are they safe? Are they fed? Will they enroll in another school? Will they learn to read? Will they fall into a different class where the teacher pronounces them DOA and just get shuffled along until they have kids of their own? Will they remember that I cared about them even though they were only in my class for a week?
-People who can vote but choose not to. I read somewhere that if people have a contempt for government then they will have a government that is contemptible. That’s what we have. The normal middle of the road people abdicate their moral obligation for voting to the crackpots, ideologue, crazies, and ass-clowns because they don’t think their vote matters. I know…I used to be someone who said…”I would rather not vote then vote uninformed” That’s a weak excuse to let the country go to hell in a handbasket because I was too lazy to get informed. For a presidential election the voter turn out rate should be in the 90%’s (In 2012 it was 58%…in 2010 it was a whopping 41%). When did the normal people stop voting? When did normal people stop running for office? Did they every start voting? Why don’t people in their twenties know that they have the power to effect change? We don’t have to let rich, old, white men rule our country…they are no longer the majority but have somehow still created a caste system of the haves and the havenots. Most of country is not who is interviewed on Fox news or MSNBC but that majority is giving the reigns over to those geniuses like Cliven Bundy and Ted Cruz.
-Citizen United and McCutcheon. I think we need to get a system like England. Each canidate is given ____ amount of dollars by the government and that’s all that can be spent for elections. It makes more sense then the over 2 billion dollars that have been spent in the last 2 years for elections….that’s not even money spent towards lobbying.
Ok…If you read this far then you are either a good friend who is worried about my stability or a bad friend who is documenting my decent into crazyville. Either way thanks for reading….my fury at the things I can not change peaked somewhere are the NRA and now has gotten back down to a manageable level. Time to leave these things behind and focus on the things that I can change.
I can continue to care about every kid who comes into my class for no matter how long they are there.
I can show my students that chaos and yelling is not how all adults function.
I can join Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety group.
I can talk about the importance of voting to people I know and volunteer for campaigns I care about….I promise not to do this on a first date though.
I can vote with my money everyday by consuming products that support my ecological values and political values. This may be tricky but I would rather spend time becoming informed then keep throwing money at companies who are doing bad things for people, communities, and the world.
I can become more conservative with my finances so that I don’t buy unnecessary things which will both support my ideology about saving money and also my ideology about conservation of resources.
I can do my job for my students in my classroom and remember that I can’t change other people. Not my circus, not my monkeys.
30 Days of Non-Spending and Living Well
I got this idea from the blog, Living Well and Spending Less. Essentially 30 days of spending no money except on previously committed to amounts (bills) and essential items (gas, limited food). I just read an article about how if you put your goals out there in public then you are more likely to follow through because of peer accountability. This is a list that she made about things that qualify as non-essentials.
There are a few expenses that should definitely be cut out for the month:
- Eating at restaurants
- Hobbies–crafts, golf, etc.
- Alcohol & other vices
- Lottery Tickets
- Furniture/Home Decor
I love to spend money on some of these things but I am committing to not to until February. I’m expecting that in a month of not spending that I the things that I “needed” I will find out that I don’t “need” those things anyway. I’m tired of cutting it close at the end of the month. I’m tired of not having money to travel to amazing places. I’m tired of feeling weighed down by junk that I don’t need and don’t necessarily even want. I’m tired of eating poorly on convenience food instead of eating whole foods that can be recognized as food. I’m tired of not really knowing where my money is going. I’m also tired of not having accessible cash in case of emergencies. I have done a great job of retirement planning but between now and 55 my saving habits are poor. I guess if I get bored I can always go for a walk…that’s absolutely free :)
Here are my answers to the ground rules page:
Grocery or Toiletry Items I MAY buy:
fresh fruits or vegetables
chicken, beef, pork
Things I Have Already Committed To Paying For:
Things I Absolutely CANNOT Purchase:
-entertainment (ie. movies, red box, bingo, bowling, mini-golf, iTunes, etc.)
-alcohol, going out, happy hour, etc.
-anything from Target, Wal-mart or Costco (except aforementioned items)
I will buy or make Catherine a birthday present (any going out expense also counts as part of this)
I will buy stamps to send thank you notes and late Christmas cards to those important to me…spending money on relationships is a long time goal and stamped letters is something that helps build relationships. (..And I HAVE to send Christmas cards out before February or I might as well send Valentine’s Day Cards).
Food/supplies for the animals will be an exception,( I did just buy Dubia beetles to start a colony so that this expense will be less in the future)…but no new fish even to replace the ones that I killed by accident.
If you want to do this project with me then start here at this website, Living Well and Spending Less, How to do a Spending Freeze.
Well, thanks to you who have spent the last year with me. Thinking about what I wanted to accomplish this year I realized that I don’t want to commit to a year of something. I am going to do things for 30 days instead! You can read about these things on this blog (I also plan to go back and hit the days that I didn’t get to document last year). This idea is inspired from a TED Talk by Matt Cutts. It’s a really short clip about changing one thing in your life for 30 days! Awesome! WATCH IT!!!!
Here’s some more inspirational videos!
My favorite YouTube crush ZeFrank1, An Invocation for Beginnings.
And what inspirational go get ’em YouTube binge isn’t complete without Kid President’s Pep Talk.
If you were lame and didn’t watch those videos then you can get some inspiration from these quotes!
I have learned so much over this last year. About me, about my what makes me excited, about how I react to the world around me, about what I want and what I do not want out of this adventure called life. I can’t say that 2013 has been my greatest year to date but there were some great moments, a lot of those I shared with you all on this blog. So dear reader, thanks for being a part of my year and my life. Thanks for teaching me things and being willing to be a little silly with me. Thanks for reading my ramblings even when they were late or weren’t proof-read.
I wish I knew how my journey ended, or at least what was next. There are a lot of unknowns out there. Whatever comes or goes, I know that I will remember this year as the year that I lived every day a little more than usual. Thanks for sharing that with me. Cheers!
December 24, 2013
Happy National Egg Nog Day!
Egg nog is like Cadbury Creme Eggs. I try it every other year or so. I think that I’ll like it. I don’t. I keep trying though…maybe one day my taste buds will mature. Maybe it would be better if their were liquor it in…like the cranberry juice I had earlier.
December 20, 2013
Happy Mudd Day!
Here’s a little story about a man whose name was dragged through the mud and his last name happened to be Mudd.
Once upon a time there was a guy named Samuel Mudd and he was born on this day a long, long time ago. He grew up and became a doctor. Then he was at his house south of Washington D.C. in April of 1865. A fellow that he had met previously rode up and asked to spend the night while he recovered from an injury. Mudd agreed and this might have been a poor choice on his part because he was later found guilty of being a conspirator in the Lincoln assassination. This guy made was apparently kind of a butt-face and not very nice to his slaves, but the proof of his role in the assignation of Lincoln has been disputed…especially by his relations. He eventually was released 4 years later and went back to his farm to live with his herd of kids and his wife.
The History Channel show that I watched a few President’s Days ago claimed that this might be where the term “Your name is mud” came from but it turns out that phrase was used before Sam Mudd was born. Apparently not all the neighbors were thrilled to have him back after his stint in prison.
Here’s a website with more information about the conspirators and what happened to them. I would also recommend watching Abe Lincoln: Vampire Hunter and The Conspirators….both interesting, one more historically accurate.