Thankful Thursday


This week has been a little strange for me and I know that it has been noticeable in the classroom.  It’s sometimes hard to see the big picture and that makes this last year of school (at least for this degree) seem so daunting when coupled with an incredibly difficult class to manage- although it’s fun, it’s certainly not easy.

Today, I found myself frustrated and saddened by things that occur all to often in our nation’s schools.  I stood in the cafeteria helping five classes through lunch with the help of only one other adult.  It was madness and then when we tried to take them out to recess it was a mob scene.  I was ready to scream but since I don’t yell at kids, I just tried to control the situation as best I could.  In the end, the principal worked it out and they calmed down enough to get to go outside… it was rough going though.

In those moments, I was renouncing our school and the system for making the whole situation so difficult but every time I did I remembered the first thought I had this morning when thinking of something to write about today-

You see, the other day, I shared my career doubts with a colleague and said how nice it would be to sit in an office, alone, in front of a computer screen all day.  He reminded me that it might get boring.  Then he said something that really made me so comfortable and sure in my chosen path.  He basically told me that I should never doubt my decision to be a teacher because to do something else would be a waste of my passion, drive and innate ability to do so.  Coming from someone who I respect so much as both a person, and an educator, it meant a lot.

I know that there are still days when you want to strangle the people you work with- everyone has those moments… but there is always something to be thankful for.  Even in the worst situations you can always learn something from your colleagues.

You can take their skills and their drive and use that as motivation to be better and achieve more.

You can take their negligence, their cattiness and their downright stupidity (come on, every workplace has at least one and if you can’t think of one, maybe it’s you ;)) and use that as motivation to be better and achieve more.

There once was a psychologist who interviewed to identical twins whose mother was an alcoholic.  He asked the first- “Why are you an alcoholic?” She said, “Because my mother was.” He, later, asked the second “Why aren’t you an alcoholic?” She said, “Because my mother was.” The first used her mother’s disease as the reasoning behind her own, the second used the same upbringing and DNA to choose to never have a drink.

It’s so easy to be thankful for what is good and easy and fun, but the bad, the challenging and unpleasant can often teach us even greater lessons.

Admittedly, it took a little while to come up with something today.  Let’s just say that being in elementary school when you’re a child is bliss, when you’re an adult it’s like a soap opera. Good times…

There is nothing better than a good slice of bread though right? Warm and crusty on the outside- soft and chewy on the inside.

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(Subway Wheat Bread literally just out of the oven).

Sometimes it’s the bread you get with your quick lunch and it’s standard but certain days it’s just that routine bread you’ve had a million times but it tastes so much better for some reason.

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(Rudi’s Organic Honey Wheat)

Sometimes it’s a slice from a killer loaf that just makes you happy.

Last week, I talked about the simple things.  Sometimes you just have to find your joy even if it’s in something you experience every day but to appreciate those things makes life better, no?

I know I owe you guys a real post and when I feel like I can share (or more specifically what I can share) and I’m not so emotional I will… Thanks for all the emails and concerned comments… You people rock my life 😉

Things are kind of rough chez moi.  I can’t seem to wrap my head around my life but that’s my own doing since I work full time in a stressful job, go to school full time with a major and two minors and have a life with important people that I need to make a priority as well.

In all honesty, I have fallen off the healthy eating/living bandwagon and I’m noticing the results… but it’s all about picking myself up and starting over.  I’ve done it before and I’ll do it again.

Despite some serious decisions and changes I need to make, I am focusing on the wonderful things in my life, no matter how simple, that bring rays of sunshine to my days.

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These blissful chocolate lava cakes from Dominos… I know… the horror… they’re worth every one of those 357 kcals.  Seriously… Rich, Delicious, Totally Satisfying- A meal in chocolate form. (Hey, I’m keeping it real here, sometimes a girl just needs a little chocolate at the end of the day!).

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I broke my “real” cell phone the other day.  I managed to find an old one that still worked.  It doesn’t always send texts or hold a charge but you know what it does do?  It works enough for me to be able to spend the first part of my morning commute chatting with my mother who helps set the positive tone for my day even if it’s becoming harder to maintain but still… Gotta love the mom time.

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On that cell phone note, the day it broke my brother ran out right away to try to get me a new one.  It didn’t work out but it just helps remind me how great he is.  Even when he annoys me, at the end of the day, he’ll do anything for his big sis…. The shot glass? I bought it for him in 2006 at the zoo.  I just forget to take it to him so it sits on my coffee table and every time I see it I smile.

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My inbox… from the quick emails to my dad in the evenings, to the encouraging ones from you guys throughout the day, even when it overwhelms me there are some hidden gems in there that make it a good thing!

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How random am I? These funky little coasters were a gift from a friend and they also remind me of college nights with my girls back in my dorm days.  Good memories.  Great girls. Good times.

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This little thing is making my school year a million times better!  I used to lose my SmartTrip (kind of like a flash pass for bus/metro here for you none DCers) all the time.  I found this little thing that I can clip to my key chain which I keep clipped to my person (it’s necessary- I may or may not have thrown away a couple of sets  of keys last year too).  That means I always know where it is, I can clip it to my bag so I know where both things are in the AM and I don’t need to take it out to use it either!

Sometimes, the weight of life- adulthood- relationships- career- education- everything just seems unbearable.  It’s so easily to be overwhelmed by these things and feel like you cannot make it through, you cannot sobrevivir (survive but the word breaks down to mean “over-live” it just works better than English, no?).  The truth is that you can and so can I.  Just search for the things that will make you happy, keep you sane, make your life easier.  It’s worth the effort!

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The view from my window- even when I hate my teeny, overpriced place this makes it better

P.S. Don’t forget to enter my Dr.Krackers and my Chobani giveaways 🙂

Dang… I spent too much money today.  Wait, no I didn’t.  I love my 30% off coupon.  I got a bunch of good stuff- four sweaters for work, a new bra for runs, two tanks for yoga/runs for… forty dollars.  Yes, yes, yes! I’m am the ill bargain shopper.  I should give classes, but then people might grab the good stuff before I can get to it… hmmm.

Before I left, I had a quick breakfast so I could catch the next bus.

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That’s not a peanut butter cookie… but it’s the best Larabar I’ve ever had.  Take note that I’ve only had two other flavors.  It was more like a healthy PB cookie not like the decadent ones I used to make all the time! I only ate one of those clementines the other was bad 😦

I had plans to get a taco for lunch.  I had a major craving, but once there I just couldn’t stand the smell of them.  I guess my tastes have changed pretty drastically because I used to work at a taco place (one horrific summer) and I enjoyed my free meal daily!

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I got a five dolla instead. Loaded with veggies, pepperjack and honey mustard, just the way I like it.  Bread was soooo good today! Yum.

The lady gave me TWO FREE chocolate chip cookies.

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No anthrax, JVal (or at least I hope so). I think it’s just because I noticed that she was speaking Spanish with ease as opposed to English, so I just switched to what I knew she was most comfortable with. She said they couldn’t sell them because when they baked they all ran into each other.  Oh well.  I ate one. It was good!  I don’t know what I’ll do with the other… they don’t really freeze well and they’re not exactly health food.

I actually ate at weird times and I’m still not hungry so I don’t know what dinner will be. I guess I’ll update that tomorrow.

I had such a strange body confidence day.  In my old jeans and a free from work “teacher-esque” tee I still got hit on a ton at the mall.  *sigh* Too bad that’s not my style.

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Oh my gosh, I just put a real picture of myself on the internet.  If you know me, you’ll know that I’ve always hated full body pics from 12 onward no matter what size (correlation with that ED onset, no?).  Well, today, even though I’m not perfect (duh) and I still want to make improvements, I’m proud to be who I am.  Once upon a time, I was 45 lbs heavier and I’ve worked really hard to be healthy and to do so without falling into old, horrific habits.  I had to stand on a stool to take this picture fyi… I’m too much of a shortie to be seen otherwise. It’s easy to look in the mirror and say I don’t have guns like Madonna (ew) and I’m not a stick figure, but I like my curves and no amount of exercise or dieting is going to get rid of them.  I choose to be proud of them, and thankful for them since I don’t want to be a LaLohan (ew again).

What are you most thankful to your body for?

I’m thankful to my body because it gets through runs even when my knees don’t like me, and 20+ mile bike rides, and long yoga sessions.  It always gets me where I need to go especially since I don’t drive.  It’s forgiven me for all the years where I mistreated it first by underfeeding it and later by neglecting it entirely and ignoring all the warnings it gave me.

P.S. That’s my mom I’m on the phone with (who else would it be haha).  Also the shirt says “Exercise Grows Brain Cells” on the front, and “Healthy Active Kids Make Better Learners” on the back (’tis true).

(I do have pictures but I’m not feeling camera cords and there are more important things in life sometimes.)

I had an old blog where every Thursday I talked about the thing I was most thankful for, and I think it’s such an important part of life.

Being thankful is one of the core concepts my parents tried to instill in me (and my brother).

I think this was our first family photo1

I think this was our first family photo!

They are what I’m most thankful for today.

Along with some great values- like loving everyone,  faith and integrity, they also taught me really healthy habits as well.  Though I often fall short, my parents still insprie me with their active lifestyles. Walks with friends, instead of dinners out. A huge vegetable garden they tend to together in the summers.  Jobs that keep then going all day. And they’re kind of old not 20-something!

Check out the hair... and the outfits!

Check out the hair... and the outfits!

I learned to love my veggies, that fruit counted as dessert, and that playing catch and long walks were part of life.  My dad even got roller blades just so we could go to the park as a family and he could keep up with my brother as my mom and I walked in the evenings.  They even bought me a really expenseive treadmill thatI didn’t use nearly enough when I decided that I “needed” it.  They were always supportive!

We really love eachother and through some akward teenage years full of strained relationships we’ve managed to come out of it much closer.  My parents are among my best friends. I know not many people can say that.

My DD

My DD

My dear dad took me out to make snow forts, to museums on school holidays and went on as many field trips as he could.  Today we don’t talk nearly enough, but that’s only because once we start talking we end up realizing it’s been four hours and we both have to get up early the next day.  It’s so nice to be able to talk to you dad about your problems and struggles without judgement.

Biker Babes

Biker Babes

I talk to my mami most every day.  Sometimes for hours, other times for mere seconds.  I don’t feel like I’m ready to face my day without a Good Morning and I Love You from her!  She supports me in everything and is my number one sounding board.

I have the best parents.  Even though we live far apart (they should move, no?) I feel like we’re closer than ever and every day I thank God for them.

Plus, how many parents will drive anywhere, deposit anything or drop everything for their (much too often bratty) children?!?!?  From what I hear, not many!

Thanks DD + Mami

(P.S. My right ‘shift’ key is broken, who knew you used it so much in typing? Time to call a Mac Genius!)