Saturday, February 11, 2012

Life in My World – Week with a Full Moon

  • In addition to my other teaching job, I began teaching history at the Kimber Academy this week. Hence, my preoccupation with the Six Day War. In another week we start American History and I’ll be back on more familiar ground. The class has approximately 15 students aged 12-17. One of the fourteen year old students is ready to graduate and has already started college courses on-line. One of the twelve year olds has also started college English on-line.  It's exciting to see these kids so hungry to learn, and by taking the college courses on-line they can feed the hunger while still continuing to grow and mature within the safety of the family.  By the time these kids are mature enough to attend a college campus they'll either have one degree or at the very least a solid plan of study.  It’s an invigorating experience and the two teaching opportunities are challenging me squarely.
  • I played the organ at a funeral, and though it only took a couple of hours, I dreamt about it the night before so the experience seemed much longer. In my dream I played for a Jewish funeral and couldn’t recognize the page numbers nor the songs in the hymnals. The rabbi called for the song so I played by ear and my ear was very out of tune, which added to the mourners’ regrets. I got to the funeral in real life and found it was the same kind of organ on which I first learned to play. I smiled when I sat at it; it felt like riding a familiar bicycle down a dirt road and was a comforting feeling compared to the previous night's dream. As far as the memorial service, biographies are my favorite kinds of books, so even though I didn’t know the person well who was being remembered, I enjoyed hearing the stories and imagining what her life was like. 
  • I took the missionaries around to their appointments one day this week. One of the missionaries had just arrived in town an hour previous so our first appointment was her very first as a missionary. She was so eager and excited. It was fun to view her enthusiasm. 

  • Last year Calvin, Grace, and I had Valentine mailboxes that we opened each night the week before Valentine’s Day. Grace was excited to carry on the tradition with Abe this year, but he ended up leaving for training. I knew one of the best Valentine’s gifts I could give to Calvin was to tell him we wouldn’t be filling what he called the 'tunnels of love' this year. I was right. I had a fun time filling in for Abe and filling Grace’s real mailbox instead. Phil and Tim, the postmasters, always ask how the kids are doing. They only know them by their addresses, but are kind enough to remember details and ask about them. Because I had to be organized for Grace’s box, it meant the rest of the kids got their Valentine’s early, too. Who knew being timely could feel so good? I sent each family a chick-flick, popcorn, and milkduds to sprinkle on the warm popcorn. Levin got a book and promptly read it.  (I  wrote his name and address on the plastic cover it came in and mailed it as is.  I love mailing things in their original packaging.  It's so bright and colorful . . . and cheap economical.) 

  • I’m taking another writing class. When I signed up to finish my college degree on-line, I thought the majority of my credits would fall under family life. It turned out that more of my credits qualified for a writing degree than a family life degree. A writing degree requires lots of . . . writing. It’s laborious, especially when it’s a default major (education was my original major). This current class has me freewrite a lot. Freewrite is when you sit and dump your thoughts upside down onto the keyboard and see what sorts out in ten minutes. Ugga, ugga. How embarrassing. It’s like accidentally dumping your purse in front of a store clerk and wondering how in the world your underwear ended up in it. I also have to write a fiction story in this class and I absolutely stink at fiction. I’ve always had a great admiration for those who can imagine stories or hear melodies and wondered how they did it. I’m still wondering. Heaven help me and the instructor both when we hit the poetry-writing section. 

  • We made play dough this week and flavored it with cherry kool-aid. It smelled good enough to eat. This is my neighbor and sometimes he and his sister come over and play. Guess what his favorite food is? Celery. He will eat stalks and stalks of it and has ever since he was two years old. This time Calvin got him eating raw green beans too, handfuls at a time. 

What’s life in your world like this week?


michelle said...

That does sound like a challenging job!

I like the image of riding a familiar bike on a dirt road. I can totally remember what that feels like.

How sweet that you sent early valentines to your kids! I haven't done anything valentine-wise yet, rats. (Jill tells me milk duds are great on popcorn, but I haven't been able to veer away from m&m's yet.)

The image of accidentally dumping out your purse and wondering how your underwear got in there made me laugh out loud!

I wish one of my children had celery as a favorite food!

My week has been one of getting back into my life: piano lessons, teaching art to Eva's class, attending Institute, accompanying for jr. choir, cleaning, cooking, etc. It's been exhausting but also great.

Ande Payne said...

1. Did you know Valentines Day has always been one of my favorite holidays because I used to LOVE waking up and seeing what kind of treat was on my plate at breakfast. It was the best because it was partly because it was so unexpected. I was so worried about school the next day(or excited when I was in elementary school and we had mailboxes full of lifesavers and conversation hearts)that I'd forget you did that every year and it was always such a great surprise! Just like our Valentines package this year! I saved the movie for while Joe is gone. I'm very much looking forward to it. Thank you.

I laughed at you comparing free writes to spilling your purse and wondering how your underwear was in there. You are funny.

Cassidy said...

How fun! I'm dreading this week. Derrick turns a YEAR. Now don't get me wrong, I am VERY GRATEFUL he's alive and well, I'm just sad time went by so fast. So this week is me trying to figure out a way to make my soon to be one year old recognize he's special while also trying to make sure he knows he still has to be my baby.;)

Tiffany Fackrell said...

this is a little random but when you mentioned the mailman and knowing your kids it made me think about a funny story. so when David and I got married a lot of people sent cards addressed to David and Tiffany Fackrell with my parents address on it. well the mailman knew that David and Tiffany Fackrell lived at David's address and not the Byington address. so even though they had the Byington address on them they would be put into Fackrell's mailbox. funny right!?!

and I love valentine's day. The valentine bug visits our house!

Melinda said...

I love that you still do sweet things for your family on Valentines day. That is exactly what I want to do for my kids.

That picture of the grand baby reading his book his so darn cute.