The NSN takes on the Yard

Summer is the best, but it also makes me bonkers. As a teacher, I have two months to pack in all my hobbies and interest (am I really complaining here?) But sometimes it makes my ADD take flight and my hands freeze.

Write some children’s lit? Read a book? Read about best practices in teaching? Become a landscape designer? Interior designer? Craft? Blog? Invent fun things to do with my kid? Exercise?

The list of fun is exhausting.

The jungle of the backyard has had my mind and hands on it since spring, so I may as well focus my energy on that second landscaping design career and make home my personal portfolio.  And, what the hell, I’ll blog about it too.

The hubby and I have lived in a single family home for almost three years and had a baby shortly after we moved in, so we kinda let the landscaping go.  And it went.

So now, to work.  First project up is the ivy.  Poison and otherwise.  Stay tuned.


Old Dog, New Job

imageWhen I was six, I cried each Saturday it was my turn to be the goalie.  I was terrified by the thought of missing a crucial save and letting my twirling, booger-picking teammates down.

When I was seven, I sat on the stairs and wailed when my parents signed me up for kid pitch softball, terrified I’d let myself down swing by swing.

New roles and responsibilities are not my bag.  I get scared shitless, give myself hives (or shingles), and finally get fucking going.

Next week I start a new role in my same school.  From Reading Specialist to Literacy Coach.  I am creating the job, the framework for the work I will do. I will be an agent of change for many who do not wish to change.  I will mentor, consult, cajole, and coach.  I will be asked questions I don’t yet know the answers to.  I will see teaching practices I abhor and will need to remain positive and focused on incremental change.  Teachers, parents, and most importantly children will rely on my ability to do my job well.  And my husband and daughter will need me to not bring my stress home.

It’s basically shit-ass scary.

But I say, “Be damned impending hives!” I won’t be that six year old, snot running down my chin for fear of failure.  I will be the woman – thoughtful, positive, fearless – that I’d like my daughter to see.  And I’ll prepare like a mother fucker.

“She’d Stay with you Forever

if she could,” said the vet, my tears reflected on her cheeks.

I looked back down at Wrigley, stroked her ear.  Here we were, cramped in the back of the truck and she was finally at peace.  No more throwing up.  No more losing weight. No more pain. 

A decade of love ending with what felt like an awful betrayal.

We’d been slowly marching toward this day for the past two months.  There was the last walk. The last peanut Frosty Paw.  The last good morning kiss. The last ride in the truck.

I tried to tell her.  I tried to explain it was for the best. She just looked at me with those soft, trusting eyes.  Tired eyes, for sure, but loving eyes just the same.

Some day soon I’ll write about all the heartwarming parts – the gleeful arrivals, the tail that beheaded Grandma’s prized lily, the inexhaustible loyalty, and even how she got me through labor.  I’ll thank the family who surrendered her to the Animal Welfare League of Arlington.  I’ll be grateful for all the love, annoyances, and silliness that are wrapped up in our last ten years together.  But right now all I can think is,

I’d stay with her forever if I could.