My first blog post of 2011 is going to be more on the personal side than first grade. I have been away from my kiddos for two weeks now, and am not going to get to see them until the 5th. Breaks are always a welcomed blessing. Burnout from long days, holiday preparations, Christmas programs, parties and shopping, while still trying to teach; are at times very overwhelming. The breaks are always as much a relief for me as they are for the kids. But after the hustle wears down, and the Christmas dinners are over, I am ready to be back in the classroom and with my kiddos once again.
As usual this lull in time finds me contemplating my past and anticipating the future. The holidays always bring bittersweet memories of Christmas’s past, and days of childhood- mine and my children’s. This Christmas we were blessed with not only the kids, but the company of my oldest brother and his daughter, my mom, mother-in-law, and a favorite Uncle and Aunt. Many other family members sadly were not here, but the house felt fuller and warmer because of those that were. It was a Christmas to cherish and remember.
Looking ahead always starts with looking back. Taking inventory of the past year and years before that. I am a tremendous “planner.” I plan parties. I plan nights out. I plan projects. I plan what to cook. I plan how to arrange and decorate. I plan what to buy, when to buy it, where to go, when to go, who to see, what to see, and what to wear. I plan activities, and of course I plan lessons. So naturally the New Year finds me planning “me” and my intentions for the New Year.
A few years ago I started listing my “intentions” for the year instead of resolutions. About that same time I started picking a word to base my year on. I came upon these ideas after reading Henriette Anne Klausers’ Write it Down Make it Happen and Debbie MaComber’s nonfiction book Knit Together, and of course it was on Oprah a few years later. I pull out these two books this time year after year and always find new ideas, or information I had forgotten about. But in some uncanny way they have seeped into parts my life.
Recently I noticed that some of my favorite bloggers such as the Two Writing Teachers and Ali Edwards use such things as intentions instead of resolutions and one word for the year. They have deemed it OLW –One Little Word.
This year I have bounced around a few words and have decided on some and then changed my mind. I have had such words as inspire, aspire, gratitude, and balance in past years. But this year I wanted something different. Something that would grab me and help me BE me. I first came up with “plan” (cause I love to) and then I decided on “diligent” (something I want to be), and then finally decided on “assiduous” (showing persistent and hard-working effort in doing something) it was catchy and fun to say, something I strive to be, and it caught mine and other people’s attention. It felt perfect.
BUT then my brother came for Christmas…and he brought his iPad…and he let me play with it…and it had BOOKS to read on it…and I read Jon Gordon’s The No Complaining Rule, which led me to buy his book The Energy Bus (and of course I had to buy the other book, as well because my brother wouldn’t leave his iPad!) Because of these two books I have changed my word to ENERGY! To me it encompasses all the other words, and is something that I need, we need, I hope to portray, and have, for 2011 and many years to come.
My list of intentions is long and will need ENERGY to see them through, but because I am diligent and assiduous I know my ENERGY will last!
I PLAN to introduce OLW and a list of intentions (we will make one as a class) when we return to school. I can hardly wait to hear the words they come up with. We have been “collecting” words all year. Our goal is 100 “unusual” or “new to us words” before the end of our school year. We will add these to our “Word Jar.”
Breaks are always a welcome reprieve from the busyness’. But this year I am just as anxious to be back in the classroom, and on our way to new words, new intentions, new planning, and new ENERGY!
Happy New Year!
List of Intentions 2011:
Write every day
Post on blog at least 2 time a week and join “Slice of Life”
Slow down, take time, for family, friends, and me
Listen and watch
Give thanks and show gratitude
Volunteer and do more random acts of kindness
Stay in contact
Do something for me
Take a chance
Organize, stay current
Tell those that are important to me that they are-show love, pride for them
Have, show, live with-ENERGY!
Ask people to ride my energy bus! Come along!