We are in the ring again.

Since May my guy has been feeling off. Since May I have watched one thing after another eat away at him and I have cried so many tears.  I am so damned sick of crying. All I knew is he was not himself. I started to wonder if it was me or if TN just took much of him away to recover from.

A month ago I begged him to see a specialist again. It seemed past the surgery recovery phase and it was just staying the same. He admitted he wasn’t feeling the best. By August he was on several meds again and dealing with horrible headaches.

We went on Thursday. We didn’t expect what we got. He now has occipital occneuroneuralgia which means it has moved to another main nerve coming out of that nerve center. The surgeon is unsure if this happened as a result of damage during surgery or if it just the nerve still healing.

My guy also believes his TN is not in the surgery induced remission because since it has been cold he  has been struggling with jaw pains again. The surgeon is not convinced. He feels like we have to deal with the ON to figure out the TN.

The headaches I have been yammering on and on about for t he last four months were occipital migraines. A very painful migraine. But thankfully (I guess) his tolerance for pain is high because he barely notices it or classifies it as pain. As we discussed with neuro my guy kept saying, “But it doesn’t really feel like pain.” But I watched the Dr.’s face and he shook his head and grabbed my hand and said, “That is nerve pain.” He went on to explain that his inability to recognize it as such is concerning.

Next Thursday my guy will undergo a nerve block procedure that will aid in the diagnosis of and possible treatment of the occipital neuralgia. It is done outpatient in the neuro and spine center in Fort Wayne. If it is just a healing nerve his relief should be immediate and it should allow him time to heal. He also can continue to have them every six months as needed. If it doesn’t help than we are looking at nerve damage.

That doesn’t mean he is out. It just means our options are different and anywayrisk/benefit analysis needs to happen. There are med options and surgical options. And the med option we already tried. He took him off all of his previous meds which were dangerous to continuously take.  He replaced it with some that are kinder to his body and geared more toward the neuralgia he is facing.

I feel positive about this because he has a plan and again he doesn’t feel crazy. All of the neuralgia’s are not common which means you have to have skilled doctors who know how to not only treat, but to treat the patients they work with. Thankfully, we have been blessed.

I am still rejoicing in the fact that our lives are better than they were. I am rejoicing that he can be a daddy and husband. I am rejoicing that he can go to work and wants too. I am rejoicing that I have the usual support system I do.

Sometimes I do wonder when it all gets easier. But I know that I am lucky because I have him with me. I go to bed at night with him and wake up with him in the morning.

And again I know there is a story here to be told. I am just not sure how to tell it other than my blog. The most important story though is the one my family is building. My girls get to see love and marriage and commitment. They get to develop and witness great strengths beside great defeats. There is beauty and character in a story like that. But nothing more important than Great Love.

I am not gonna lie and tell you that it all looks as beautiful as it is written in the above prose, because it doesn’t. I am sad, I am angry and I am heartbroken. I want it to stop and I want to say no more. But I can’t. I love this man. I hate that he has to go through any of it. But I also know his pain is much deeper than my own so I will fight on.

Just Write: In the fight!

1 year ago

My husband had tmj and he was seeing an orthodontic specialist who was fixing a bite. His bite wasn’t getting better. His family doc thought maybe a neurologist should be consulted. I was applying to grad school for my PhD.

10 Months ago

My husband was in the middle of the worst pain I had ever seen any human in in their life time. I remember him dropping to his knees and wrapping his arms around my waist and begging me to help. I remember that was moment I realized this was so much more serious then what I believed. There was a horrendous snow storm going on outside, but I called my in laws and said I need you to come get the girls and I took him to the emergency room. Hours there and many pain killers, muscle relaxants and steroid shots later and he was still writhing pain. The ER doc mentioned the condition of trigeminal neuralgia and I was confused. My guy seemed to have heard of it before and had recently had it mentioned to him. They gave him enough meds to sleep. He barely did.

11 months + 1 day ago

The pain was unbearable and my husband was on 48 hours of 10+ pain scale and barely any sleep. We were on an emergency phone call with a neurologist who admitted him to the hospital and tried multiple drugs. They tried to get him to eat. He couldn’t. Two day hospital stay with a neurologist whose wise words were, “Well I could keep you here, but that isn’t going to change anything. You are going to just have to learn to live with the pain.” I went from thinking my husband had a common jaw disorder to a neurological disorder in 48 hours and I was NOT going to accept this as his new life or mine.

11 Months + A week or so ago

Multiple calls to doctors and tons and tons of research and a few connections with other TN sufferers and a week or so of my husband in the worst pain known to man and my children sitting watching it and I was fired up. Finally lined him up with a neurosurgeon and they adjusted a few meds and wanted us to hang out. We tried. It was probably the hardest 6 weeks of my guys life. He couldn’t talk, eat or even breathe without it hurting.

10 months Ago

A half an hour work up withe neurosurgeon and he knew he was in over his head and his head nurse was on the phone with two neurosurgeons for my guy tobattle have an micro-vascular decompression aka brain surgery. A surgery that is not a guaranteed fix or promises nothing. A surgery performed by only a few and his doctor one of the leading ns to deal with trigeminal neuralgia.

10 months and two weeks ago 

My husband was in the ICU with machines attached to him everywhere. I saw him in the most vulnerable state any human could be seen in. I got to tell him the news at least 6 times that two compression on his trigeminal nerve were found because he was so out of it. I sat vigil by his bed and hung out with other spouses who were also sitting vigil. I felt powerless, helpless and vulnerable myself. We all identified with one another.

Life slows way down ago

The following months were filled with trying to regain some normalcy in our lives. Only to see that TN was not going down without a fight.

5 months ago

Began recognizing that it was going to be one thing after another. Another call and another call to amazing ground breaking surgeon.

1 month ago

The temperature started to change and as it changed more and more I began to see familiar things. Facial contortions, rubbing of his face, worried eyes, anxiety. Add in the side effect of the surgery that we were not expecting: bad horrible headaches. I again get fired up and a call to ground breaking surgeon and a plan of action. A plan of action that at first was slow and steady but soon followed with needs to happen sooner.


So yea we wake up every single day and go to work, take care of our girls and our lives. But we do it in constant fear of how TN is chipping away slowly at our normal life. And I am not naive enough to think that I deserve anything normal or that normal even exists. But a world where TN didn’t drop in and blow up my life. Nothing about this life resembles anything I thought it would a year ago. And I suppose the same could be said for my life being completely different a year from now.

I also wake up every morning wondering how today will go. I hope his meds work and his pain stays at a minimum. And that is all centered around him. I worry we will be where we were a little less than a year go. I fear seeing my spouse that way again. I fear him having to feel that way or even having to worry about feeling that way.

That doesn’t even cover how I feel about my girls in all of this. He saves his best for them.

I could list all the things that TN has taken away from my husband, but that is his list to make. I know my list is long and I don’t even suffer. I suffer as the spouse of a TN sufferer. All I can say is it has changed me to the core. It has changed how I deal with life, people and my husband. I cannot unsee the things I have seen. It has only widened and deepened my love for him. But it has also made me bristly. I am insanely protective of us, our story and our struggle. But I also see the strength.

I have total and utter faith that love always wins. But this is the hard part….Love winning suggests fighting and we are in the fight.

Just Write: I worry.

I worry my voice isn’t loud enough.

I worry it is too loud.

I worry I don’t say the right things.

I worry what I say is right too much.

I worry people will forget.

I worry I remind them too much.

I worry you believe no one knows.

I worry you don’t realize how much I know.

I worry they will see too much.

I worry somehow some way I can make it better.

I worry that by making it better I make it worse.

I worry that some day I won’t have the worry.

I worry that the worries will never go away.


Last week TN Wife, this week MR

I feel like I can write so much more freely as mommy rhetoric than I can as anyone else. It is me. Most people who know me know I am mommy rhetoric, my students know as mommy rhetoric (said as retorerick) and my family knows me as such.

I am sure you have figured by now I am crazy busy with my own school, my job school and my three beautiful girls. All three who are doing amazing. Work is good. I am absolutely in love with the classes that I am teaching this year. Life is good.

But then there is my other life,  I am a TN wife. That means on a daily basis my conversations consist of TN. I watch my husband suffer from a disease that takes its toll on him, our family and our life. From the outsideimage looking in I suppose it looks normal and yes parts of our life are normal. That is because that is the life he chose to live.

It is a choice he makes every day to go on and live our lives as normally as possible. I am sure the people he works with see him as better and I am sure the people that see him being a dad think similarly. And I would too. By all accounts he looks and seems fine.

And I ask you not for sympathy for my family. Sympathy does us no good. I ask that you keep my family in your thoughts, your prayers and enjoy your families. A good friend told me when all of this started in my most desperate of times, “your family will grow stronger and closer” and that is a blessing. Initially, I was irritated because I was not looking for blessings. Instead back then I was seeking sympathy and someone to just say it all would be okay.

And it is. My family is closer and stronger in ways I can’t place words on. A fabric built so strong around our hearts that we will forever be bonded in this unique way. So yes there are blessings everywhere and I try and see them.

But I won’t lie. I am not a saint. I am angry. I am angry at how little the world knows about TN. I am angry that we went through all that we have gone through and yet I still wake up in the middle of the night petrified of tomorrow. I know more than anything that tomorrow is not promised. I am angry that more doctors are not working on TN. I can count on two hands doctors that treat it. I am angry it isn’t in our everyday vernacular like breast cancer or diabetes. I wonder would it all be different if it was?

I understand why though. I guess. Chronic pain illnesses are often not talked about. They are the cases that remain undisgnosed. They are ones who have to suffer in silence so we don’t have to acknowledge their pain every day. They are the ones that take countless mind numbing pills. They are the ones that take their own lives looking for relief and comfort. But when you look at it that way it changes you.

So no I don’t feel sorry for myself or want sympathy from anyone. I am just trying to enjoy today, praying for tomorrow and finding my way living as a TN wife. What is going on is long and complicated. It is hard to put into words and it is hard to put out there.

But what I can and will say is in the next two weeks please keep my family in your thoughts. But even more than that keep my husband in your thoughts. Do that by living your life with love and gracefulness.

The storms are raging.

If you know me you know there is not much I don’t do. I try and do everything and usually I can. Maybe I don’t always do them to the best of my ability, but I do the best I can. Toward the end of this summer I found it would be required that I do graduate level work in communications in order to teach a particular class that I had lined up to teach. I was completely okay with it. I knew it would be hard to juggle with my PhD stuff out there. But I knew if anyone could it would be me. I also really wanted to take ownership over this course that I am teaching. Both programs started a few weeks apart. Both are on different campuses. I am a graduate student in Communications at my Alma Mater through Purdue University. But I am also a Comp/Rhet PhD student at Ball State, so there is a storm brewing here.

8302c834209e3f2e9e69862c8ba968b7Then you have my new life and I purposefully chose those words. My family is still in a deep recovery from TN. We are sorting out the quickness with which our lives were flipped. We are getting to know one another again. We are finding ourselves relying on one another more than anyone else. No one but the four other people I live in my house with understand TN and what it has done to our lives. It is only just in the last month or so that I have even begun to open up about a lot of it to anyone other than a few extremely close friends. My own daughters I am not even sure they are there yet. And my husband. My sweet, strong husband who has endured more than any human should ever have to. He is coping with who he is after this. My husband who was the most even keeled, kind, and quiet man is now faced with anxiety, anger and uncertainty that he is trying to figure out how to cope with. He is coping with the discrimination that comes with an invisible disease. Cruel and intolerable discrimination. We also are all coping with this idea that he won’t able to ever be who he was before last November. His surgery worked. His surgery didn’t make it all go away. He lives and functions by daily meds. Meds that cause horrible side effects and issues. And we are on this roller coaster of new meds, side effects and meds to help with side effects. It feels never ending sometimes. But more than anything it leaves him exhausted and irritable. But not the kind of exhausted and irritable after a hard day at work that all of us experience at one time or another. Instead it is an exhausted and irritable that is hard to even explain. We are assured he will get to a good place. It just takes time. But his headaches last for days. We constantly have to watch out for triggers for his TN which are noise, stress, fatigue and anxiety. All things that happen regularly in life.  So there is a storm brewing here.

This year I have a 7th grader, a 5th grader (both middle school) and a kindergartner. That in itself is a storm of homework, piano lessons, softball and dance. Oh and braces, dental appointments and doctor appointments. And just being the kind of parents we have always been. Especially on days when we are tired and angry. Or we are ready to just go to bed at 4.

And finally my job. My job which is so demanding (that has no negative connotation here). I work well over 40 hours a week. I love my job and with every single bit of my soul I place all I have left here. So there is a storm brewing here.

So everywhere I look there are storms. I want to do it all, but in doing it all I am losing something. My family. My girls. My sanity.

I had to look at my life and see what I could release that would let me breathe a bit. I just needed to catch my breath and I was drowning.

It was my PhD. Now before you feel sad on my giving this up. Don’t. I didn’t give it up. I went to my program chair and asked what kinds of options I had. I plead and begged for mercy. I didn’t even know what I was asking for, but I knew I needed it and I knew this is where I needed it. The decision went before a a graduate program chair and committee and it was sent back that I could defer my program for a semester and they offered me another if needed. I was given until January, but also until August 2015 if needed to try and deal with life. To search for normalcy.

I am not so naive to believe that this search for this elusive thing that doesn’t exist will be found. Normal is what we make it. For me right now my normal is 63389b66f058a0b9801131a8f2bed4d2emotional chaos. But it is fully managed. I know once the physical manifestation of my heart (my husband) is better, I will be better. And I am sure many will jump on me for saying pursuing my PhD is selfish, but it is. It is for me right now in this moment. I am not doing it to advance a career. I will likely not receive compensation for the advanced degree because my chosen field doesn’t practice such a thing. My hope is that my position between high school teacher and college instructor will eventually advance the thinking on this particular topic. But I gotta do it and I know I will. But right now I am a wife first. I am a mother first. I am a teacher first. All I know is that I will do it. I don’t know how and I feel insecure and lost without a direct plan. But I won’t let it go. I can’t. I won’t let TN win that way.

Plus I know I am a fighter. I always have been. I wouldn’t have made it where I today without fighting the whole darn way. I will continue to fight and fight. And when I can’t win and the storm takes over I will use a darn tarp.

It sucks. Storms suck. But I know they make us who we are and I know more than anything I would not be surviving this storm without the storms I had before this. Love will win this battle too. Love for self, love for the love of my life, love for my career and love for my dreams. Love always wins. It all feels so impossible, but in the end it always wins. And maybe some of this me convincing you  is actually me convincing myself. I am not sure. I just know it has got to get better. But I get confused because we are better.

“To move forth and grab your destiny is admirable. To shape your own future with the strength in your fist is beyond that.”
S.A. Bouraleh

50 Days of Truth.

Over 100 days ago I accepted the 100 Days of Happy Challenge that I gave to myself. I wanted to try and find happiness. It came when I needed it. Well I still need it, but it came at a time where I was trying not to get sucked into the black hole that TN has carved out of parts of my life. 100 Days of happy forced me to look and see the good in every single day and every single way. And I am glad. But I also struggle because it was/is carried out in social media which means it can come across as just seeing the beauty in my life.

I don’t like that. In fact, I find myself irritated when I am not being my authentic self in my social media world. I don’t want everyone to always see and know my pretty parts and not equally represent the not so pretty parts. I am real. I am 100% real. I make typos and grammar mistakes on every single blog entry. My pictures sometimes show my house not so neat. My husband and I fight. I don’t always aww and coo over my girlies.

So to counter balance the happiness that I just spent last 100 days relishing in I am creating my own campaign and it actually may already exist somewhere there in the internets. But for me it is new and it based on the truths in my life. My imperfections at their finest. I am not only going to embrace them, but welcome them. The need for perfection can kill.

“The most important kind of freedom is to be what you really are. You trade in your reality for a role. You trade in your sense for an act. You give up your ability to feel, and in exchange, put on a mask. There can’t be any large-scale revolution until there’s a personal revolution, on an individual level. It’s got to happen inside first.”
Jim Morrison

I am 100% okay with being imperfect. I am also 100% okay with sharing my truths so welcome.

Day # 1


Here she is. My # 3 who was very mad because no one will play with her. This is despite the fact that we have been playing with her all day long. In this moment she is shouting, “No one even listens to me.” I grabbed my camera and she started waving furiously and shouting, “No.” And even though I find these fits of independence to be an annoyance and sometimes a hassle.  I know that this is a 5 year old’s way to assert herself and to find her voice. So we let it play out and we pick our battles. Some are worth it, and some are just better to not. Her outfit today, on Sunday, is just not. Hence the shades of aqua green, florescent orange and tie dyed red shorts.

With that…. #50daysoftruth

A New Beginning…

I will admit this is only my third year at teaching in the k12 system and in a high school environment. So by comparison my word may have a little less meaning. But I can tell you this, my school is doing amazing and innovative things. I have the distinct pleasure of working in a department with forward thinkers who not only understand their content at the top of their game, but who push themselves above and beyond Every-New-Beginningand rarely accept just average classroom techniques. What we are doing is hard to place words too. But what we are doing is supporting, teaching and driving a concept in education that I don’t believe many can compare to. 

I do work for a magnet school. I also work for an early college. And I can tell you that you will hear about the things we are doing. You won’t just hear about them, you know that they are making major impacts on our community, in our students and in our own lives. And no I would not dare put down my counterparts in traditional high schools or early colleges. That is not what I mean at all because truthfully I have no background knowledge of other schools. Every single teacher usually has some sort of impact be it good or bad. But what we have is lightening in a bottle and every year we pray and hope it stays. And every year it just gets more and more strong. Sometimes the intensity of such a thing is overwhelming, but then I tend to be an intense person.

I am two weeks into our new school year and two weeks into my dual credit course. I am beyond pleased with the strides we have already made. My juniors have done exactly what I expected from them and above and beyond. I also have had the distinct pleasure of working with these students as freshman and some as sophomores. But to watch their minds grow and change over the last two going on three years has given me more fulfillment than anything other than my own family’s strides and successes.

I have created a college environment in my classroom where the student not only thinks for themselves, but they are expected to think with reason. This has and will be their hardest maneuver yet as students. I have offered a very gray version of an English class. They have had me for the black and white version of an English classroom, so they are adjusting their sails. Or adjusting to me moving their cheese (we read “Who Moved My Cheese?” as freshman together) and trying to figure out what it means to be in a college English classroom.

I am trying to teach them Education has power and that they need to learn to harness it. I truly believe they will; and as they sail off I will be so proud to have been a small little sliver of them grabbing hold of their lives and directing it. I am teaching American Literature this year in my dual credit course with Freshman Composition. And I realized that it is not without thought that 11th graders are being taught to read and write and figure out who they are. All of the literature and writing we are doing is about finding identity, cultural belonging and finding the words to articulate it. It is an existential crisis in the making and is that not what teenagers 16-18 are going through?

They are figuring out colleges, taking tests that tell them whom and what they can be. They are being smacked with the realities of working, realities of people in their way saying you can’t or can, the reality of overcoming their childhoods and truly thinking about what life could be like out there with out the safety nets provided by their parents, guardians, schools, churches and friends. They are being told to find their voice, their own way and do this before you are 18. It is a lot.

I get to help them articulate those voices and put them on paper. It is not just an honor, but a privilege and no matter what my paycheck says every two weeks it has absolutely no comparison to the magic I get to see as they find themselves, their voices and their lives.

Saturday Sharing….I am a teacher edition.

Teacher Sharing…

Since I am teacher and since I have been noticeably absent I can tell you that the two relate. I have been in the process of gearing up for all brand spanking new classes. All of my classes are dual credits except for one which means I am balancing 11 grade standards for the state and my districtearly-college-studentsv3 with the college standards I have been appointed to uphold. A task that requires big brain puzzles as I call them. Not impossible not insurmountable but definitely a task. As well, within my classes I have an added structure of another college course for some of the students that struggle with reading. So at anytime I am possibly teaching three different levels or classes. That also means that I possibly have three different students doing three different things. It is differentiation at its finest. I love the challenge. I love that I had two years to work with all of my students to get to this point. I play the nice balance between high school and college.

When I went into this field I went in guns blazing determined to protect what my peers and I call the ivory tower. I was dead set it was my job to determine who entered and who did not. And to extent it is. But being an early college instructor is not quite so simple. I am teaching college rigor and standards. But there is a HUGE BUT. I am teaching it to teenagers. And no I am no pioneer on this front, but I am sensitive to that. I am also sensitive to the fact that my students take quite possibly seven other classes that are dual credit. They do not have traditional college student schedules where they have hours in the day to study. I cannot carry that mentality I did with my college kids that they needed to make time. And yes I believe my students need to do that, but it is far more complex. I am the voice for the university, but I am also an advocate for the early college high school student.

Anyway, I have a theme this year as I do every year. This year I am coming at my writing courses seeing the writer as an architect. It is a theme I found great connection with and feel will hit home with quite a few of my students. This concept is not new. However, it is innovative and will require teaching and understanding on my part and my students. More than anything, I am passionate for my job. I have always let that passion drive me and it has never, ever steered me wrong and I suspect that this year will be no different. Nor will the years to come.

viewEnd of Summer Sharing…

May I suggest a hotel to you? The JWindy.com. My guy took me there as a last of summer Hurrah. I fell in love. It isn’t the type of place you stay all the time. Well it maybe for you. But for us with three kids and well life. We would not traditionally stay somewhere like this. This is the type of place you go if you want to be pampered and escape from the humdrum of life. The price isn’t miserable, but more than your average hotel. But you get what you pay for. The car wash of showers, the robe, the food and oh my goodness the floor to ceiling view. And might I even suggest the higher you stay the better. Since I have moved from Indy I have found myself falling in love all over again with the city I am from. When I grew up in Indy I distinctly remember you didn’t do things downtown. I remember going downtown and seeing homeless people and dirty buildings and places. Within the last 10 years downtown has been revitalized and I feel like this hotel is the diamond on that ring.

You could also tag your hotel stay with a trip across the street to an Indianapolis Indians game if that is your thing. Which for very cheap you can get access to one of the cleanest and neatest ball parks around the midwest. I get spoiled by living in Fort the food at the Tincaps games is amazing and unique. The Indians have traditional ball park food. It is good and it does the trick. But if you are into draught beer than you will love the Indians stadium. The price of seats are decent. The lawn seats seem to me to be the best, most comfortable seats in the place. We have yet to sit there.

Alrighty, I am off to do some more planning. To do some more summering. To do some more hanging out with my girls. Life is good.


We loved with a love that was more than love.  – Edgar Allan Poe

6 months ago today I was living my worst nightmare. I was waiting to see my heart. I sat outside of the ICU crumpled, worn and eager to see his face and his smile. I was naive and foolish. I thought, like most of the world does, that surgeries fix things. I was full of hope and eager to tuck this into bed and call it done.

That wasn’t the case. The battle is still being fought. But the playing ground is way more even and for that we are grateful. Everyday the post surgery life feels a little more normal. He is running again, he is balancing out his meds and he is working hard at trying to have as normal a life as he can.

I am blessed and full of love for this man. I will forever be in love with him.












I will forever fight for him, with him and because of him. Trigemenial neuralgia will not win because love always wins! And a from scratch chocolate cake doesn’t hurt the cause either. 


Saturday Sharing…Time for School.

Gah, I can tell you right now this SS will be all over the place and mostly because my head is all over the place. I am teaching a completely new schedule this year. All except for one class and even that one class is different, so I am kinda co-teaching kinda splitting. I don’t know what we call it but it requires some new thinking.

I am good at coming up with innovative and fresh ideas in my classroom. In fact, I work so hard on that. But I struggle putting it all down and making it work. I will get there, but I can tell you this week I have sat staring at the wall, a calendar and resources and just stared. I am trying to think of making all work. I am teaching dual credit freshman (college) English, Junior Level English and dual credit speech.

The speech class has thrown me for a bit of a loop and though the principles and theories of communication and rhetoric run very similar paths universities do not see it that way. It has required some extra work from me. I am grateful for the extra knowledge and steps and the opportunity. salemexamofI am really grateful to have it in our department. I just gotta work hard at staying true to the theories and pedagogies of speech communications and I will.

Add in that I am teaching American Literature this year when the last two years I taught novels and creative writing where I had freedom to choose what genre and backgrounds I wanted to teach. The junior level year in Indiana is basically meant to digest the sophomore level of US history. My minor was in Brit Lit as a BA and quite a bit of my graduate work was in Brit Lit. I like American Lit. But it is different. Guess what I have been doing? Any guesses?

I have watched show after show on History channel about Puritans, Salem Witch Trials, Jamestown, our beginnings and the list could go on and on. I did notice the curriculum really only seems to slide Native American Literature in and really does it with just Sherman Alexie (the standard go to). I plan to add. Grateful for my effort and work with one of my favorite professors I have immense understanding and knowledge of Louise Erdrich and by proxy Ojibwe (Chippewa) culture. I placed her into my creative writing course in the Spring and plan to cover Alexie and excerpts of Love Medicine. I have also read like a fool. I have read online, books and talked with my guy and girls about what they know. Thankfully, I feel very skilled in the literature but struggle a bit more with its place in History.

hero_evernoteBut I have decided to switch myself to an Evernote classroom. I researched and keep finding that Evernote provides great access for students on and off line. It remains there forever and you lose some of the nuances of my previous method. My previous method was using ITunes U which I did love and I have it set as a back up. However, the moving around and access to Itunes U was at times cumbersome and the limits on a private class were frustrating at times. As well your classes expire. Evernote will have my classes there always.

The thing that probably sold me though was the tagging system. Kids work in tags in their tech lives. I have created notes, readings, research and assignments all based on tags. There is no limit to the access to my class. It will always be there for them when I cannot be. It will always be there for me year to year and all I have to do is edit or change or leave it. Probably the 2nd best part of Evernote is the Evernote clipper that you can add on to your browser and you can basically clip what you like and create a document from it. That has been a tremendous use to me this summer. Once I am teaching with it if I don’t like it I can switch back to Itunes U. But I am doubtful.

I also will continue to use Showbie for assignments. I love the time stamp, the ability to lock assignments and the ability to archive. I used it all last year and it worked quite well.

I cannot say enough though that I am so excited for this year. I am excited for the challenge of new classes, I am excited that I am teaching the dual credit courses, I am excited to teach Juniors. I am just plain excited. I have a feeling this will be my best year yet.