Monday, July 29, 2013

There Goes My Summer!

**Warning:  This is a picture heavy post...but entertaining all the same!**

I feel like summer vacation zoomed past me at light speed!  But when I stop to think about where I was when I went home on that last day of the school year back in May, I realize...I did get to enjoy a nice two months off. By that I actually mean this...

No really!  When everyone else was going home and truly celebrating on May 24th, I was freaking out knowing I had one more week before my National Boards portfolio entries were due.  For that first week out of school, I worked like a dog to finish up final edits, do major reflections on myself as a teacher, scanned documents, pictures, letters, and more like a mad woman, and sat at my pretty little iMac uploading and watching a status bar move across the screen.  Many deep breaths and hesitations (pressing that "Submit" button was trickier than an outsider would think) I submitted two days earlier than I told myself I would!  

Proof and memorialization of me submitting
Then, I got to enjoy my life for a few days before I had to go back in to the classroom for a special math lab school (AKA summer school).  Meanwhile, I was stressing out about having to take my 4-hour assessment at the Assessment Center in 3 weeks on June 21st.  There was no time for rest as I read up on some math techniques and how to interpret and diagnose reading errors (since it had been awhile since I'd delved in to that).  You see, I was working towards a Middle Childhood Generalist certificate, which means all subjects (including fine arts and health and wellness) ranging from 3rd to 6th grade.  There were quite a few things that I needed to get back on the bike and practice riding for.  So those 3 weeks looked a little something like this...

A little bit of light reading, highlighting, and going post-it flag crazy!'s honestly a really amazing textbook, really.

I was even boring my furbaby, who nicely held down my papers for me so they wouldn't blow away.

I even went old skool and used flash cards to help me nail down all the accomplished teaching standards I would have to use in my essays.
To keep myself focused on the day and how I'd live through it, I...okay, before you read this next part, I ask you not to laugh at me...I scheduled my DVR to record the Jodi Arias movie on Lifetime.  It kept advertising to premiere on June 22nd, and I knew that would be the day after my tests.  So to me, that was like my target, to live to see June 22nd.  Okay, stop laughing now.  I enjoyed sitting on my couch that night with no responsibility but to watch this made for TV movie!

Did anyone else get excited about this debuting like I did?
When June 21st came around, I was a ball of nerves and didn't think I'd make it through the test alive.  I was afraid more than anything that I would get in there and forget everything I knew as a teacher or I, especially, would not be able to find the right words to answer the mutli-step questions.  All of them. But, thankfully, I got through it and survived to tell...

I proceeded to celebrate in a HUGE way by going out to Buffalo Wild Wings with my supportive husband and friends at my favorite place to unwind.  I CANNOT describe in words how amazing it felt to be able to actually take a breath and enjoy my summer and my free time for the first time in 2 years!  

Honestly, when people asked me if I was going to travel or do anything once I was finally finished, my answer to that was  I wanted to just be able to sit on my couch, read a book or watch T.V. without having to worry about what I should have been writing, typing, or reflecting on.  And you know what?  It felt fantastic!!!  Hence the meme I posted at the top of this blog.  Sure, I won't find out my results until the end of November, but I couldn't be happier to have several months not to think about it anymore...until maybe October when it creeps up on me.

But being the ridiculous Type-A person and teacher that I am, several days later, I was back to my kitchen table working on school items for the upcoming school year.  I couldn't help it!  There were all sorts of ideas I had because of completing National Boards, and frankly, a lot of things needed to be changed in my classroom to improve the impact on learning for my students.

I did get to enjoy more time with my friends though and it felt really good to join them and not worry about what I should have been doing back at home.  Bunco. Book Club. Day trips. Yelp Elite pool parties. Ceramics painting.

A few more shots of my "boring" summer vacation, just so I can remember I wasn't a total vampire!

In fact, I did lots of shopping and movie-going as well...two of my favorite pastimes!!  Who is with me when I say this was one of the BEST movies this summer?!

Anyone who lives in Arizona knows, its better to just hide inside like a vampire until the weather cools off again.  So, to some my summer probably seems like a total bore...but sweet freedom was all I tasted!
Heh. So true when you live in the desert.
Tomorrow (today, when this post goes up) my summer ends.  My alarm clock will go off at 5am.  I'll have to join the morning commute.  Day-long meetings.  Eventually that leads to lesson plans on the weekend again.  Etc. Etc. Etc.  Someone pinch me so I can make sure this is all a dream...that I don't have to go back to being a working stiff already!!!