Sunday, December 12, 2010

Christmas Decor PSA

I would like to thank the folks who live a block over for FINALLY getting rid of the pumpkins and straw bales in your front yard.  They were really pretty, until you decided to put up your Christmas decor.  Now don't get me wrong, Christmas decor is equally as stunning outside your early 1900s mansion, but the two together...not so much.

To the folks down the street the other way: I wonder if this wind advisory is causing you to re-think those tall, inflatable decorations in the yard?  I can't be sure, but I think Frosty may have just flown past my door!

In other news, I feel it my duty to say that, from experience, 300 count icicle light strands are NOT as long as they sound.  If you think one strand will do the job, buy two!  It took two Wal-Mart trips and one Walgreens trip (extension cord...I refused to use the circa 1965 plug with exposed wires), but I have Christmas lights now. I feel a bit more in the spirit, and in only seven days, I will be on break and can jump head-first into the Christmas season!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Holiday Dilemma

One great thing about the holiday season is that it allows us to have glimpses of fantasy.  On the other hand, the bad thing about the holiday season is that we have to go back to reality.  Tomorrow I return to work after five days off for Thanksgiving.  During that time off, I was able to get a good bit of my Christmas shopping done.  Still, I have walked a fine line between getting into the spirit and ignoring real life altogether.

I keep telling myself that in only three weeks, I will be on break again for Christmas.  Don't get me wrong, I love my job.  I can't imagine what it must be like to have this dilemma for people who hate their jobs.  Still, my heart is telling me that it's time to go all out for Christmas, while my head is aware of the stack of compositions to grade, lessons to plan, and finals to write. Sigh. 

The dilemma is making me feel like Flick, the kid who is pressured into sticking his tongue on the rusty flagpole...I am one step from the triple dog dare that will cause me to give in altogether. For now, I am compromising - Christmas music and homework.  Once I feel like I have made some decent progress, cocoa and decorating will follow.  After all, it's the most wonderful time of would be criminal to let it pass by, right?

Friday, October 29, 2010

The True Meaning of Halloween

On paper, 'Glee' is precisely the type of program this musical theatre and classic rock lover should enjoy. Still, I have only sat through two full episodes in as many seasons. The last episode, featuring musical numbers from 'The Rocky Horror Picture Show,' piqued my interest, and I watched the episode without commercials online a couple of days ago.

The show as a whole was just ok, but the following scene resonated with this jr./sr. high teacher. Sue Sylvester is a character that is so far from who I am, but who shares one thing with me: a desire to help kids succeed in life. Sure, her methods are a little odd and, often times, self-serving, but Sue cares and voices her care with no qualms.

Thank you, Jane Lynch, for preaching to the cynic in all of us.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Take Two

Life has a way of sneaking up on us, and I have definitely felt that over the past year.

Since my last post on my blog, I have lost my job due to budget cuts (thank you, state of Illinois), lost my brother, moved again, started a new job, and managed to somehow lock myself out of the old blog.  I am definitely in a better place (professionally and personally) now than I was then, and given that so many in my profession are without work, I know how fortunate I am to be teaching in a school I love, and making enough to pay for all of my needs and some of my wants.

Where my brother is concerned, that was a shock that I am not sure I have completely taken in yet...some days are harder than others, to be sure. Life will never be the same,  but it does go on. It has to.   

It is my hope, as I start this new blog, that you will embrace my "Take Two."  Some posts will be fun, some more serious.  Whatever the case, I welcome comments and suggestions for topics I might visit.

Oh, and since I took inspiration for the blog title from them, I have to give credit where credit is due.  Enjoy!