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Archive for December, 2019

Do people fit the meaning of their names? When I was pregnant, I was obsessed with not only what names I liked, but what they meant. I must have had at least five different baby name books, including an Irish Gaelic baby name book. Marty vetoed every one of the Gaelic names, but, to be fair, I also vetoed many of his, like “Lobo” or “Charlie” (Our last name is Brown; it wasn’t happening.). If we did have a girl, though, I would have fought to the death for Aoife.

Have you ever looked up the meaning of your name? Apparently, mine is Latin and means “youthful” and “downy-(soft) haired”. I can dig that, although I prefer “Julia” or “Jules” to “Julie”. I don’t feel my age. I certainly don’t act like it. Soft-haired? Well, I have a lot of hair. Left to its own devices, it’s crazy wavy, but it can (sometimes) be tamed and soft.

Some names have meanings that make me wonder if parents looked them up before bestowing them on their children. For example, the name Brendan sounds lovely and Irish until you learn that while one of its meanings is”prince”, it also means “smelly hair”. “Cecelia”, my Grandma Ruth’s middle name that I absolutely LOVE, means “blind”. There are actually websites devoted to baby names with terrible meanings such as https://closeronline.co.uk/family/news/worst-baby-name-bad-meaning-girl-boy/ and https://nameberry.com/blog/good-names-with-bad-bad-meanings Perhaps the meaning doesn’t matter so much to them, which I can understand.

If you don’t know the meaning of your name, check out https://www.babynames.com/ and see what you think.

So, what are your thoughts? Does your name fit you or not? Comment on Facebook, Twitter, or below.

Happy Holidays to everyone celebrating something this time of year!

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All across the world today, teachers are celebrating. There are social media posts, parties, a general sigh of relief from almost every continent. Why? It’s Winter (Christmas) Break, our first significant time to rest since mid-August. Thanksgiving was just a teaser; this is the time to let our hair down.

This is not a post to whine about what teachers go through from August through June, although I could quite possibly postulate about that for hours. Seriously, it’s the toughest job I’ve ever had, but that’s neither here nor there. What this post is about is what I’m excited to do over break. If you are a teacher, I’m sure you can relate.

  • Go to the bathroom whenever I want. It doesn’t sound like a big thing, right? But any teacher will tell you that it really is. In most other jobs, being able to use the bathroom when you need to isn’t something you have to plan your day around, but you just can’t leave a classroom full of squirrelly kids on their own, even to take a quick pee. It wasn’t always that way. I can remember my elementary teachers putting someone “in charge” and leaving to do whatever (including taking a quick smoke in the Teachers’ Lounge), but that could never happen today. (Both the smoking in the Teachers’ Lounge and leaving a student “in charge”.) It’s torture sometimes. For the next sixteen days, however, I can drink water whenever I want and will have a happy bladder.
  • Sleeping in. I am not a morning person. I will never be a morning person. I consider having to be out of the house 7:00, okay, 7:10-ish, every morning to be cruel and unusual punishment. These next sixteen days are a godsend and there will be no alarm clock.
  • Reading. For fun. Bliss.
  • Writing. Must. Finish. Book.
  • Not grading on my own time (almost) Yeah… the teacher bag is in the closet until after Christmas. Maybe even New Year’s Day. We’ll see.
  • Being myself. Not my teacher self. Enough said.
  • Not being disrespected every day. Being spoken to without being challenged or argued with will be refreshing for a change. I’m used to it, but that doesn’t make it pleasant. It wears on you after a while.
  • Watching TV. My brain needs a break. Dr. Phil, Say Yes To The Dress, and Long Island Medium are calling to me. Marty is not as enthused about these shows as I am. Or so he says.
  • Celebrate the holiday. I’m actually kind of in the Christmas spirit this year, a change from many previous years. Has meditation helped with that? Or maybe it’s because Marty and I have made it a point to do more “Christmas-y” things together. I don’t know, but I’ll take it.
  • The evil thought that some parents have to deal with their children on their own all day, every day. Slightly passive-aggressive? Yes. And, realistically, most of my students are fine, but, still, there are a few…

These are just a few things about break that are wonderful. Not that we won’t miss or worry about our students, but right now they need a break from us as much as we need a break from them. It’s time to refresh and renew so that we are better teachers when we go back.

To you and yours, have a very Merry Christmas, a Happy Hanukkah, a Blessed Solstice, and a very Happy New Year!

Image result for beautiful winter images free

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I’m sorry that I haven’t been writing lately. School is crazy and I have a show in rehearsals so I’m a bit behind. I promise to be back with something meaningful soon. In the meantime:

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I love the moon. I love it so much that I have a tattoo of the moon phase on the day I was born. I feel connected to the moon, respect its influence over tides and many other things. It’s a symbol of womanhood, magic, and mystery.

But I hate teaching on a full moon week.

Go ahead, laugh and say it’s nonsense, but any teacher worth his or her salt knows it’s true. The full moon makes kids crazy.

Pray for your teacher friends and family this week.

Seven more wakeups.

That is all.

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It’s the holiday season! If you’re looking for the perfect gift to give a family member aged 10+, consider giving a book by yours truly. Traveler is a time-travel story about family, justice, and courage. If you’re in the Detroit Metro area, pm me to get a signed copy or order on Amazon here:

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