Ten Things I am grateful for…

So today is Sunday and for that me that is usually a reflective day where I try and sit down and think about what I am grateful for this past week. I am really trying hard to see the positive in every day. And that isn’t necessarily because I see it so negative. It is just because I don’t even want the give the negative a chance to sit down roots. We have been through too much that I need to be be grateful for every single beautiful moment that we have because it was a gift given.

1. #3’s letter game. She always starts out, “Momma, tell me all the words that start with the letter B like biscuit.” And yes we play it at least 10 times a day, but I don’t care. As a studier of the learning of literacy I find it so cool. We go through word after word and some she gets wrong based on sound and some she gets right and blows my mind. She isn’t even in kindergarten yet and I know after this game she knows words like magnificent, beautiful and many, many more.

bdayabs2. # 2’s birthday yet again. She wanted two things that were very special to her. The first was a typewriter, but not just any type writer. She wanted an old fashioned looks super cool type. The second was her very first cell phone ever. I initially told her there was no way I would be able to locate a type writer. Then through the amazingness that is one of my students I got one. I have had it since May and have been over the moon since. And her cell phone. She got one of those too. Nothing fancy, but one that made her feel just as special as her older sis and one that keeps her connected when she needs it. We love that we gave her that. And she is 10. Double digits.

3. A moment in my classroom. So I have been with my school going on three years now. All of my students I have had a lot. This summer I am teaching a course and most of the students are having me for their 5th or 6th class. This is unique I know for a traditional high school. But it is not at all unique for my school. Anyway, we were on a break from our class and two of the kids were standing next to me talking. We were having a normal everyday conversation and all the sudden I became so overwhelmed with sentimentality and emotion. When I met them they were barely out of eight grade and so much smaller and less mature (I don’t mean immature, I just mean young). Now they are juniors and they tower over me. I had to excuse myself because wow. I am blessed to be a teacher. I am blessed to have the opportunity to witness this amazing thing happening. Being a teacher truly is my calling.

4. So many talks with my guy. Can I just start this by saying TN sucks? But can I also say I am grateful that it came into my life. Some amazing things have happened since. I got to see what really matters, I got to see proof of how strong we all are, it has brought us all much closer and I know my husband in an entirely different way. I didn’t often ever get to see him vulnerable. In fact, it was so few I could count them on one hand. 1) our wedding day 2) the birth of # 1, 2 and 3 3) our sad loss and 3) the loss of his grandparents. But this year he has had to lean on me, give up some and deal with some of the ugliness that life can provide. But this week in particular we are doing lots of talking. Not just talking, but deep and meaningful talking. He does NOT talk. That is not his thing. But it has meant so much to me that he has opened up and tried to articulate a lot of stuff. And it all needs to be said. So for that I am grateful.

5. Very much time with my beloved Kpuff. Kpuff and I had a garage sale together. When we have been going through things Kpuff was also in her own private misery. It took a toll on our friendship. Not that we became less of friends, but it was tested. We struggled to stay in contact, we struggled to keep it together and honestly we struggled talking the real talk. Sometimes I believe it was because it was all that was around us. We were each others bright spots, but when you are going through difficult things sometimes bright spots are hard to bear. But this week we had a garage sale and we laughed a ton. We caught up like we never had. And we sweat together. How can you not be reunited after that? I am so grateful for those four days of seeing her every single day. I am so grateful our kiddos got to hang out again like they had so many times before her struggles and Kyle’s. It was good, good, good.

6. Movie Date and following conversation with my # 1. She is getting so big. When I am with her lately I have some of those moments where I wonder how it all  happened so fast. She is right at my height. She wears my shoe size. She smiles the prettiest smile and she has the most fun loving personality. I knew all of this but hanging out with her I get that quick reminder to pay attention because before I know it she will be driving, picking out colleges and moving on without me. And I was even more grateful because she seemed so big and grown up, but chewed my ear off non-stop about all things Disney. The amount of Disney fact this girl has is crazy stuff.

7. Time with my neighbors. I cannot tell you what my neighbors have done for me this past year. They have kept my family afloat with the every day parts of life that sometimes don’t get done. They have supported and loved my girls and what children could not use more of that kind of positive in their lives? They have shared their own lives with us and let us be a part of theirs. You have a garage sale and it gives your neighborhood a chance to reconnect. I don’t know what it is about looking through others stuff, but it always does this. So many times Kyle and I have discussed moving because honestly we could probably use something a little bit bigger. But it is always the neighborhood that keeps us. 728f06d47a82c4a4d4304e10cfe290a2We have lived here for 13 years and we have loved every single minute of it. I never believed that hub bub they show you on TV about neighbors and neighborhoods. But it is true. I am a lucky gal.

8. My love of my job. And yes I kind of said it before but this is different. I have been developing my curriculum for this year. I am teaching four new classes in our building and three are dual credit courses. This is ultimately the reason I was hired and what I have been waiting for for the last two years. I needed the last two years to transition from teaching college to teaching high school college students. But I am so over the moon excited to teach these courses that I allow myself to develop the curriculum as a reward for work that I need to do around the house or for my summer course. How dorky is that? I reward myself by developing curriculum? Oh well. I love my job, no secret about that.

9. Social Networking. Twitter has connected me to so many great educators, innovators and writers. Facebook allows me to stay connected with friends and family. I am tired of being cheapened by others. People lessen its value and sometimes equate it with tabloids. And I say okay, but it depends how you use it. If you use it to share positivism, love, innovation and passion there is greatness in that. And I do. Think #100days of happy where I am purposefully trying to seek out happiness in my life. That is God working in my life even through social networking.

10. My PhD stuff. I call it that because that is what it is. It is still very much taking shape, but it is taking shape. I am scared right now. In fact, scared and overwhelmed. But then when I break it down and look at it piece by piece I am not so much. I am excited to see and know knew things and people and places. I am excited to become a part of the Ball State Community. I am excited to add my voice out there. I am excited to work with my advisor. I am excited what it all means. This week I am dabbling again talking with my department and I am reminded why I chose this profession, this course of study and this program. Good people. Good thing.

And just a tiny reminder here…. #lovealwayswins

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