Holiday Traditions (Running and otherwise)

What I like best about the holidays are the traditions that come along with them. This year, as I’ve done for the past few, I joined in The Light Run.

Although it nearly did not happen.

My son, Lucas, and I registered for this way back at the beginning of October. At only $14 (and the request for unwrapped toys), this untimed fun run is great and supports local charities.

That said, I think both Lucas and myself were feeling a little overwhelmed with all the stuff we’ve got going on. He had a few tests in school coming up, a band concert to rehearse for, and he was voicing his concern about getting it all done. (He is his mother’s son, for sure.)

Rather than getting stressed about it, I asked him what he would like to do. Between you and I, I wasn’t really feeling it but I also didn’t want to SAY that to him. This is a good hobby that we both share so if he wanted to run, we’d run.

A few years ago it was bitter cold and there was a 5k route and a 1-ish mile route. That year we ran the shorter route. He asked if we could recreate that this year and of course, I was happy to oblige. Since it was a fun run, there was no added pressure about what we did or did not accomplish.

While the rest of the runners went off straight at the beginning to do the first larger loop, we peeled off on our own journey. We were completely solo but thankfully we’d printed out directions and there were signs along the way to mark where we needed to turn.

Soon enough we came to the main event, the Hagerty Lights display. Lucas loves it, I love it, and naturally Santa and Mrs. Claus love it too. Santa asked Lucas what he wanted and when he told him he was asking for a weight set, Santa actually took some time to talk to him about weight lifting and making sure he makes smart choices. It was very sweet.

Notice how I say that everything is our favorite? Um, yes. We just love to love and it’s easy at to do at this lavish display.

You can tell how much hard work and effort this family and their neighbors put into hosting this free show each year. They have an area set up for donations so I made sure to bring money (and a little extra, because I’ve forgotten during past years!).

Once we finish our quick jaunt through the streets of Pitman, Lucas and I both agreed that we were really happy we decided to do it. No regrets!

Creating new traditions is always fun too. I’m currently doing the “no rain dance” because tomorrow I’m volunteering at the Elf ‘n Coca Run representing Healthy Kids Running Series. I’ll be handing out medals at the finish line of the kids mile race and I am very excited for that!

Tomorrow evening we are going on a train ride through a light show with my extended family. This is a new to us activity as well but I’ve heard good things so we’ll see what it’s all about.

And next weekend (right before Christmas, omg), Rachel is coming back for round two of baking with the Daniels! Will my cookie design reign supreme over all the land? We shall see!

What are your favorite holiday traditions?

Self Care Stuff

Self care Monday! I don’t know if that’s a thing, but for the sake of this post, let’s just roll with it, okay? Since I started marathon training in the spring (you knew that, right?) I feel like life has been pretty busy. The summer flew by and once school started it was work and training and that’s about it. It’s been over a month since Chicago and it finally feels like things are starting to slow down a little.

This weekend was the first weekend in a long time, I’m talking months, that I actually got to do absolutely nothing.

And it was amazing.

Now, that’s not to say that I didn’t have household chores or papers to grade, because I definitely did those things. But here are some other things that helped me relax this weekend that may help you out over the holiday break. Or just a weekend if you don’t get a few days off.

Read a book. Yeah. A whole book. You can do it. Turn off everything, get a cup of coffee, and read. Don’t get up until you’re done.

Go to a movie. My sister and I saw Crimes of Grindelwald this weekend and, while it definitely left a lot of questions unanswered and had some obvious plot holes…Jude Law as Dumbledore. That’s all.

Make that Yumbledore.

Sleep in. Full disclosure: I never sleep in. I’m a single, childless woman, but I have an internal alarm clock that makes sure I’m up before 7AM on the weekends. I have to drag myself out of bed on the weekdays, of course.

Workout. I actually didn’t workout this weekend, but I hear it’s nice to do.

Binge watch TV. I’ve finished with season four of Gotham, so now I’ve got to wait until January for the new season to start. This week of break will give me time to catch up on my regular weekly shows. Anyone else feel like Netflix judges them when they watch for too long?

Quality time. I live with my sister and two cats and we do spend a lot of time together. The weekends are a good time to catch up, though. To talk about stuff other than work or school. It gets tiresome and sometimes it’s nice to just hang out.

WriteI have a couple of personal blogs I write for so I tried to work on those this weekend. I like to write book reviews and I also write about my teaching experience. Both are great outlets to let me get my feelings out concerning my other passions.

Cook. Okay, fine. I ordered pizza this weekend. But I also made banana bread. From scratch! I even used a recipe book.

Nap. I accidentally fell asleep while binging TV today. It happens.

As we begin to move into the holiday season, where many of us will be in high demand and our lives are going to get even more busy…remember to take some time for yourself. Take care of you and be the best version you can. We don’t always do it. Sometimes we’re too busy taking care of others to even notice that we need a break.

So. Read the book. Take the nap. Go for the run. Take care of yourself.

Girls on the Run is So Much Fun!

At the end of last year I was out on a run (and probably complaining about it on Instagram) when I got a message from a parent from my school. She mentioned that students in her class at the local university were coaching Girls on the Run as part of a class project and thought it would be something I’d like to do at our school.

I had heard about GOTR through social media and a few other things, but hadn’t really thought much about coaching or getting involved. I coached Cross Country at my school last year and that was my first experience with coaching anything, so I was interested to see what GOTR was all about.

We got in touch with the director, met with my principal, and applied for our school to become a site for GOTR over the summer. I also learned that a new teacher we’d hired was previously a coach and would also be interested in coaching…and Girls on the Run was born at my school.

Coach Ashley and Coach Randee in our matching shirts!

There were some logistical things to work out (still are) but we wrapped up our first week on a positive note and I’m really looking forward to the rest of the season!

If you’re wondering what Girls on the Run even is, here’s a little information for you about their core values:

  • Recognize our power and responsibility to be intentional in our decision making
  • Embrace our differences and find strength in our connectedness
  • Express joy, optimism and gratitude through our words, thoughts and actions
  • Nurture our physical, emotional and spiritual health
  • Lead with an open heart and assume positive intent
  • Stand up for ourselves and others

Now, I’m a second grade teacher and the program is for 3-5 and 6-8 grade girls. I love these values and everything GOTR stands for. I believe it’s something my school tries to instill in all of our students and I’m so glad we got to bring this program in to help empower some of our girls.

I was nervous about whether or not we would have girls sign up, but we actually had so many that we had to bring in another coach and waitlist some girls for next season. A lot of these girls I’ve known since they were either in kindergarten or second grade, and some of them are my former students. I love the fact that some of my girls signed up because I was the coach, but I truly hope that they learn and grow from this program. What we’ve seen so far has been a lot of fun. The girls are eager to learn and participate in the lessons (even if I’m still learning them too!), they are already helping us problem solve (because it rains in Florida every afternoon), and they are learning how to encourage others. They had fun running inside last week when we had to move for rain and made the most of it!

It’s been one week. Two days! I am so looking forward to seeing these girls grow. I know there are some who will only enhance themselves and their own values, but there are also those that struggle. The older girls are getting to points where everyday is a challenge and there’s always something new to discourage them. Some of these girls are doing a lot of activities and are already learning to make choices about what they are good at and what they want to do. Some of them just need to know that someone is there for them to lend them a positive outlook on life.

The program allows girls to set their own running goals each week as they increase their time spent running and build up their stamina. So far our running has been minimal, but the girls are still having fun and setting goals for themselves.

Kyndall kept us (me) entertained while running and exceeded her run goal.

Presley set a goal and exceeded it. She’s a rockstar!

I’m already loving seeing these girls and their passion for running and fitness, and it’s only been one full week. Like I said, I can’t wait to see what these girls can and will do. I feel privileged to be their coach.

Some of My Favorite Things

You guys. Since Clay has been away, I feel like my life is very routine. This is a good thing – I like routine, I thrive in it, I enjoy knowing what my life is going to look like day to day and I really like going to bed early.

That said, my routine means that I’m not doing anything toooo exciting. Work, gym, home, food, bed. The gym is probably the most exciting part of my day. (Because whats NOT exciting about the gym?!) I’m not training for anything specific right now – though the CrossFit Team Series just started and I am participating in that… standby on how much that effs me up.

Since my routine is pretty well set, I’ve been hermiting hardcore. But in that hermitage, I’ve been able to dig in to some of my introverted interests. So, I figured I’d pull an Oprah and share some of my current favorite things with you!

Listen

My Favorite Murder – Murderino here. If you’re like me and you’ve harbored a seemingly taboo interest in the slightly macabre, serial killers, or true crime, Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark are the gals you want to listen to. Every week they share… you guessed it… their favorite murders. They are hilarious and sassy and advocates for mental health, among a great many other things. Dark humor abounds. SSDGM, fam.

Serial – Season three is live y’all! This time, Sarah Koenig and crew head to Cleveland: “A year inside a typical American courthouse. This season we tell you the extraordinary stories of ordinary cases. One courthouse, told week by week.” I’m two episodes deep and it is SO good to be back. I’m ready for more.

Read

The Hate U Give – This might be the most genuine story I’ve ever experienced. I say experienced because it so accurately captures what America has been living through – not just recently, but for a long time.

This book should be required reading. Like “To Kill a Mockingbird” or “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” are required reading for students because of their literary merit and important social and racial commentary, so too is Angie Thomas’ story of race, poverty, gun violence, and learning to use our greatest weapon: our voice.

If you read one book this year, read “The Hate U Give.” I have a copy – borrow mine. It’s too relevant/important/beautiful/horrifying to ignore.

WatchThe Good Place – Holy forking shirtballs. I’m a huuuuge KBell fan, have been since Veronica Mars, and you guys, this show is so good. Creator Mike Schur (of The Office and Parks and Rec) puts Bell’s Eleanor Shellstrop (who is dead) in The Good Place. But is she really? Hilarity ensures.

This show has filled the void Parks and Rec left – it’s hilarious and smart and creative. And Kristen Bell is delightful, per usual, and Ted Danson is Ted Danson. If you’re not watching this, there are two seasons on Netflix, so quit wasting your time and get on it!

The Great British Baking Show – The most pleasant reality competition show to ever exist. There are five seasons on Netflix and each one is just delightful. Not to mention these home bakers create some of the most incredible and delicious-looking bakes. I’m so impressed by their skills and jealous of their kitchen space. And I want Mary Berry to be my grandma.

So, that’s where I’m at these days. When I’m not at work or at the gym, I’m embracing my introvertedness. Fortunately, there are a lot of things to do when being around people is exhausting. What are some of your go-tos?

Countdown to Chicago

Hey! It’s been a hot minute since I’ve jumped on here to share some nonsense. First off, I’m super thankful for the Scoot Chicks and all the amazing things they’ve been sharing. Since school started I don’t feel like I’ve had much to share or much time/energy to do said sharing. As I type, I’m sitting in my pajamas wondering if it’s too late to make coffee. (It totally is.)

Here’s the thing though: CHICAGO IS IN EIGHTEEN DAYS!

I know, I’m freaking out also. I’ve kind of been documenting my training progress here and on Instagram. This past weekend my running buddy and I ran out longest run of our training we’re officially in taper territory now.

To me, this means a couple of things:

  1. I can reclaim Sundays.
  2. My legs will stop hurting everyday.
  3. It’s time to amp up the anxiety.

I haven’t been looking forward to weekends for a long time. Maybe that sounds crazy to some of you who loooooove running, but I am so ready for a little break! My weekday running has seriously been slacking, so the weekend long runs are always challenging. We had a fun (LOL) 18 miles last weekend and this weekend was our 20 miler.

I usually get up about 3:45 on Sundays. Yes, that’s in the AM. Marathon training in the summer months in South Florida has proven to be brutal. I’m pretty sure we’re ready for anything Chicago has to throw at us.

This Sunday was a bit of a dress rehearsal. I wore my American Heart Association tank and my Skirt Sports Jette Skirt in Holiday Print. I got a new pair of Brooks Ghosts before my 18 mile run and I’ve fallen in love. We’ve both been wearing hydration vests for fueling during long runs.  (Did I mention it’s hot here?) I won’t be running Chicago with it, however.

5AM. Ready-ish to rock.

We’ve been doing intervals of two-minute run and thirty-second walks and pacing pretty steadily. We do get off sometimes, but for training purposes we’re mostly worried about the mileage. Once we get to Chicago the adrenaline is going to be pumping and we’ll be ready. I really think that Michelle and I have learned a lot about ourselves from this training. We know that we’re capable of running a marathon, since we’ve done it already, but this feels kind of different, I guess. We’re running a lot smarter than we have in the past and I’m feeling really good about our progress. And we’re having fun. In the end I think that’s what matters most.

We’ve been using McD’s for their bathrooms…and also their OJ.

This weekend started out strong. The route we’ve been using is a little different than what we started with some shorter runs, just because we know we can get the mileage in with no guessing. There are multiple stops on our way for potty breaks and if we need a little boost. I’ve been experimenting with different fueling and trying to find something that doesn’t make me sick afterwards. Lately I’ve been using Stinger Chews and those seem to working well! I always carry a bottle of water and nuun to keep me hydrated also. I like the new route because it’s a little more lively and there’s a bit more to see. I definitely feel safer than I’d been feeling in the past couple of weeks.

I always snap a pic at my alma mater. #GOEAGLES

Once the sun came up on Sunday all of my strength seemed to leave me. Michelle and I both could only think about how heavy our legs had started to feel at about mile 12. It was brutally hot and we still had so many miles to go. A week before our 18 we bailed out early due to knee problems (her) and stomach issues (ew, me) and it was a smart thing to do. There was no way we were doing it this week, though.

SEE YA REAL SOON, CHICAGO.

After I made Michelle take this pic at a bus stop she told me to, and I quote, “Get your ass up and let’s go.” My biggest motivator!

 

We stopped for sodas at about 17.5 miles and the extra sugar kicked helped a little. It wasn’t as great as it was the week before, but it was still fun running down the road with cups of loud ice. Once we made it to the park where we do our final mile, we’d both shed our vests and shirts. We were literally dripping sweat and praying we didn’t run into any students at the park while we were running in our sports bras.

H E L P

So, we finished the 20 miles. It happened and it’s done. It definitely wasn’t the best but I know it won’t define Chicago for me. I’m excited about the course and everything I’ll get to see up there. My family is planning a mini-vacation with a lot of fun things crammed into a few days before and after the marathon.

I’m nervous but also pretty excited because I truly feel prepared for this race. I haven’t been this prepared since I ran my first half marathon and stuck to my training. It wasn’t easy, but we made it! Stay tuned for the recap and to make sure I survived!

Washington DC Bucket List

I’ve been living the single life for about a week now and not only has the countdown to Clay’s return started, the other countdown has started too. The countdown to our PCS move. We’ll be leaving the DC-area this winter, and even though I’ve lived here for nearly six years, there are still a lot of things I haven’t done, food I haven’t eaten, and places I haven’t visited. So, in addition to all of the lists I’m making of prep things I need to get done – lots of purging… getting rid of so much extra junk, clothes, shoes, etc. – I’m making a bucket list of sorts. What things do I have to do, see, and eat before I leave?

Here’s what I have so far:

  1. African American History Museum – The newest Smithsonian opened about two years ago and it’s been a hot ticket ever since. Everything I’ve heard about this museum makes it a must-see, especially in our current social climate. It should probably be required viewing for every American. Maybe then people would calm their tits about NFL players kneeling or Black Lives Matter and better understand why there are protests and why people of color are speaking out. Basically, if people took the time to actually educate themselves about an issue, instead of letting someone else tell them what to think, I think we’d be a lot better off. Anyways, I would really love to have a chance to experience the museum myself – since it’s so popular, tickets are timed entry and typically sell out very quickly. It will take some coordination, but I’m optimistic we’ll be able to make it happen.
  2. Milk Bar – Christina Tosi’s dessert palace. I need it in my life. There are two(?) locations in DC now and ever since seeing her episode of Chef’s Table, I’ve been dreaming about Crack Pie and Birthday Cake and Cereal Milk. I told Clay I wanted to go here before he left, and we didn’t make it, so I’m just moving that date to after he gets home. Ahem. Bring me all of the dessert.
  3. The Wharf – One of the newest spots for a good hang is on the Southwest Waterfront. Admittedly, this area is complete gentrification of the neighborhood, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t want to check it out. There are a ton of exciting restaurants, music venues, and great views of the Potomac River. We’ve talked about making a date day of a trip to The Wharf by taking the water taxi over from Old Town Alexandria and we just haven’t gotten around to it yet. I hope we can make time before we have to leave.
  4. Toki Underground – More food. I’ve never had ramen before – real ramen that is. Toki is regarded at THE place to go in DC for ramen and it’s such a hot spot that you can’t make reservations. It’s show up, and hope your wait isn’t too long. Because you will be waiting. It’s worth it though, or that’s what everyone tells me. I’m in it to win it on the “don’t miss out on DC food” game, so this is a definite “WE HAVE TO GO HERE.”
  5. Kennedy Center – Now, to be fair, we’ve been here a number of times, but in the year or two we haven’t found the time. Clay would really like to catch one more performance here and so would I. It’s such a special venue, with incredible history and has seen some of the world’s most talented grace its stages. Hamilton is currently there… and while I’d love to luck into those tickets, I’m not delusional. Lol. We’ll probably catch another NSO performance before we go and that will be special enough.

 

It’s a short list right now, but as our time gets shorter, I have a feeling that list will grow. I’ll remember more stuff I want to do and places I want to go. It’s been an interesting six years in DC to be sure… and I want to make the most of the time I have left. Cheers to the next few months!

 

2018 City Fit Girls Retreat

photo credit: Melissa Alam

August is one of those months that sneaks up on me quickly and before you know it, it’s gone, leaving me in the dust wondering where it went.

However one of my favorite events happen in August: the amazing CITY FIT GIRLS – FIT RETREAT! This was my third time in attendance; I was fortunate enough to attend previously in 2015 and 2017(I had to skip 2016 but that’s because of a trip to Switzerland/Germany so I suppose it’s okay!)

Takia McClendon and Kiera Smalls are the Co-Founders of the City Fit Girls, an inclusive, all levels fitness and wellness community for women.

Each August they host the affordable, day-long fit retreat and bring together women for some intense workouts and also focus on the importance of self-care. (For those wondering what “affordable” is: $50 for the day’s events with a $3.50 processing fee. This includes the amazing tank tops, lunch from Sweetgreen and ahem, MIMOSAS, and other assorted awesomeness throughout the day.)

Fit Retreat always sells out so it’s best to get a ticket early. It was a forgone conclusion that I’d be there again because every year is better than the last. City Fit Girls takes feedback to heart and always strives to make an memorable experience for those in attendance.

Communication with City Fit Girls is great before the Fit Retreat. They let us know ahead of time what sessions are available, who will be running them, and what they offer.

In the past I’ve had set ideas of what I wanted to do each session but this time, my main goal was just to be with my friends as much as possible so I was down to do whatever they wanted to do. I thought this would mean a little yoga, a little massage.

Nope! They were all like – let’s do all the high intensity, cardio session!

Well, okay then!

First up we did The Lion Fitness Party with Gwi and Wayne! High-intensity cardio boot camp – no problem!

photo credit: Melissa Alam

We danced, we bounced, we squatted, we might have cried-laughed a little. It was insane but a lot of fun! Sweat level: buckets

The next session had a yoga option. SURELY my friends would want to do the yoga option.

Again n-to-the-o.

Instead we climbed up the stairs (workout in itself!) to Never Give Up with Madison. What’s that, you ask?

“The invincible match between cardio and strength allows each athlete to work through this workout at their own pace. The interval training and the weight circuits each athlete will complete are designed to maximize fat burning, burn more calories and build the muscle and strength you want to reach your personal goals.”

Yes, there I am doing squat jumps. photo credit: Melissa Alam

Thankfully after two pretty intense sweat sessions, we ALL decided to take a chill pill and head up to the Vitality Lounge. That’s when my sweaty hair got the royal treatment from Priv!

Braids for all!

After an amazing lunch from Sweetgreen and equally amazing mimosas, we headed the outdoor space at The Patio for the afternoon sessions. We had the opportunity to do a group mediation with Vitality mediation studio before the afternoon panels.

The afternoon panels were moderator lead with 3 guests for each discussion. The first was about diet, nutrition, and eating and the second’s focus was overcoming self-doubt and getting out of your own head.

Originally my seat was in direct sunlight and I was getting crispy. I moved my seat into the shade, but also happened to be behind a wall; while I was physically more comfortable, I wasn’t able to see the speakers which limited being able to truly engage with the panel.

After a few giveaways and our group picture up above from event photographer, Melissa Alam, it was a wrap on the City Fit Girls 2018 Fit Retreat!

What I particularly love about the Fit Retreat is that while it’s a party like atmosphere, it’s also very warm and fuzzy. People I just met feel like friends I’ve known forever and everyone is welcoming. That’s not something that you can force to have happen, it’s magically organic that feels effortless with the City Fit Girls.

Is it August 2019 yet?

Race Recap: Rampage 5K

When I posted about some upcoming races a few weeks ago I mentioned I might sign up for a 5K or something in the midst of training. Honestly, I love race bling so when my RBF and another Skirt Sister/coworker starting talking about signing up we just went for it. The Rampage 5K was part of a summer series put on by a group that does a lot of races in the South Florida area. Their events are always fun (if not always well-organized) with fun swag and good courses.

I picked up my packet on Friday after school. This group is infamous for running out of shirts and I wanted to make sure I got a good one. I live about forty-five minutes from the race site, so I went to bed fairly early Friday night. Being back to work full-time is kicking my butt so it wasn’t that hard. If you follow me on Instagram you saw my fun Saturday morning video asking “When will I never not run on a weekend?” I’m feeling pretty good with my marathon training but, wow, do I miss sleeping in on Saturday and Sunday!

My friends were already at the race site when I got there at about 6:40. We took a quick trip to the bathroom and then headed to the start line for a picture. I was excited to run a race, but also that it was only for three miles. Most of my weekend runs are in the double digits now so a 5K sounded really great.

Skirt Sisters at the start line!

I’m not normally the type of person to set goals for races. Sometimes I’ll plan a pace I want to stick to but most of the time I just want to finish and not throw up. This was one of those races.

The morning was already muggy, as it as has been for most of the summer. I’m used to starting to my runs before the sun comes up, only this race had a later start. It was definitely steamy and my glasses kept fogging up if I breathed or turned the wrong way.

Once we got going it was a fairly simple run. The course was easy and smooth, with a lot of nice scenery. I’d done two other races at this park before that were ten-milers so I was pretty familiar with it the park. There were a couple of times when we had to veer off the sidewalk due to puddles but then I just ended up stepping in mud. By the time Michelle and I hit our first mile I knew we were making pretty good time. Our first mile came out at about 10:40 and I almost laughed! That’s a pretty fast time for us and I was totally ready to slow down and save some energy. It definitely didn’t happen though! We kept pushing through, enjoying the scenery and the morning. I slowed down to take a few pictures of the nature we were running through. I love living in Florida but I’ve come to realize that you either run through a swamp or on concrete. There also might be critters living…anywhere.

Don’t you want to run by this?

There was one iffy part where we had to run on a boardwalk that I definitely took my time on. I’m clumsy and the boardwalk was definitely slippery. I’ve also been working my butt off for Chicago and wasn’t looking to injure myself five weeks before. After that it was smooth sailing! My legs were feeling great despite the fast-than-usual pace. The only problem was the humidity. Usually I don’t drip sweat into my eyes for at least seven miles!

As Michelle and I came turned into the shoot for the finish line Ali was waiting to take a picture of us, since she’d already finished.

All smiles here!

After we finished we all checked the results, just for fun on my part. I did well enough in the results, but I’m not in it to win it. I race mostly against myself. Once I stopped my Nike Run tracker, however, it told me that I smashed my previous 5K record! I’ve been running for over five years now and it always feels like I’ve gotten slower, so it was exciting to get a 5K PR of under thirty-five minutes.

Skirts and medals! Medals and Skirts!

Once we’d take our final picture, the three of us headed to Skillets for breakfast. I’d only been there once before but I was dreaming about a waffle and bacon and coffee the whole morning.

So worth it.

For a last minute race, it was a nice little surprise. I’m glad we decided to just go for.

And, honestly, it was a nice warm up for Sunday’s fourteen miles.

Chicago, here I come.

A Day in the Life Redo

A few weeks ago I posted my “Day in the Life” as a teacher during summer vacation. It was from random stuff I did on a Saturday and it was a lot of fun!

Now I’m back to work and life is decidedly not as fun. I’ve been back to work for a couple of weeks, but this past Friday was our first official day of school. (I don’t know why.) I figured I would wait to get into the groove to do a new post, but here I am!

I started off strong on Monday with taking pictures and was really looking forward to sharing what an actual day for me looks like. I usually get up around between 5:00-5:30 on weekdays. Sometimes my alarms start going off at 4:45 and that’s just because I like to snooze. I’m not really the type of person who works out that early in the morning an I don’t like running in the dark, so the mornings are usually pretty chill.

On Monday I actually had enough time to make breakfast that wasn’t a protein shake mixed with too much coffee.

Yes, I do drink my coffee out of a Disney Princess mug most days, thankyouverymuch.

I have about a forty minute drive to work everyday, so I try to leave by at least 6:15. I’ve done well so far this year! Okay, fine. It’s only been five days.

Traffic sucks, but sometimes you get the sunrise and the water. *heart eyes emoji*

I like getting to work early because it helps me feel like my life is kind of together before my kiddos show up. We open our classroom doors at 7:45 so a good chunk of my time is prepping what I didn’t do the day before or, like, talking to my friends. I’m very good at procrastinating.

I’m pretty much ON from 7:45 until about 11:25. Our meeting is packed with English/Language Arts, Social Studies, centers, Science, repeated bathroom breaks, me telling students over and over to sit down, me drinking coffee and silently running my hand over my face in frustration…

Well. It’s only been five days, right?

Monday wasn’t really anything spectacular. We go to lunch and recess for an hour. Sometimes I have lunch duty but this week I’ve been outside for recess where it’s 90 degrees but feels like the surface of the sun. Lunchtime is the twenty minutes I get to interact with my teammates while we all try to stuff our faces with food.

 

A quiet moment alone with my coffee. Remember what I said about Disney Princesses?

After we melt our faces off at recess, the afternoon goes by quickly. We have silent reading time, where I catch up on emails and enjoy actual silence, and then math, which I do not enjoy. I know, I’m the teacher. I still don’t like it. At 2:00 my students go to the special area classes. Don’t ask me what class they went to, I don’t even know what day it is. After specials its dismissal (EVERYONE GO HOME) and, yeah, that’s it.

Since the year is still so fresh I’m not involved in any coaching or afterschool tutoring just yet. I know those days will come when I’m not leaving school until late afternoon and I’m fighting traffic, but I’m okay with it. I like to be prepared for the next day and if that means staying a little later, that’s fine with me.

This Monday, however, I had to take a quick trip to my chiropractor. I’ve been going since this summer and I’m liking it a lot. They are helping me “get my head on straight”. *ba dum tss*

My doctors do a supply drive and partner with my school to help students in need.

 

Helloooooo.

I decided to step a little out of my comfort zone and stop at the local park to get in a quick run before I headed home. I haven’t been getting many miles in during the week and my long weekend runs are suffering. My plans were thwarted when I started getting texts about…many things. There are no pictures because I got distracted and upset about things I can’t really control and gave up on my run. I did manage a good 1.5 miles, but it wasn’t what I was hoping for. Sometimes Mondays are like that and you’ve just got to roll with the punches.

Eventually I made it home for a shower and dinner around 7PM. I did some meal prep on Sunday so that was easy to take care of. Most days I bring work home from school to do while I sit on the couch and watch TV, but I don’t have much to grade at the beginning of the year.

This year is definitely going to be an interesting one. I’m teaching Gifted/Cambridge students for the first time in my teach career. This also means that I have to take five district classes to become certified so, yeah, life is about to get busy.

I’ll still be taking selfies with my coffee cups, though.

Wordless Wednesday: August 2018 Stride Box

Accel Gel – Energy Gel – Raspberry Creme

HerbaLand – Protein Gummies

PR Bar – Chocolate Peanut

Verb – Energy Bar – Maple Blueberry

EBOOST – Super Powder Daily Power Up

Roots of Wisdom – Protein Meal – Chocolate

Double Layer Cool Towel