Monday, June 20, 2016

Free-End of the School Year Reflections

It seemed like June would never get here and did.

Whoever thought of the idea to have school go through the middle of June here in the PNW has probably never attended school in the summer.  Growing up in Russia, traditionally, September 1st marked the beginning of the school year, and June 1st marked the beginning of summer.  Three solid months off.  Simple math.  Brilliant idea.
As usual, kids started to check out in early May and by the time June came along...fuhgeddaboudit!   
As a parent, I checked out around the same time as well.  Overnight,  I seemed to have forgotten that they still get homework and that I might still need to read the paperwork that continues to come home.    And as a teacher... well this may very well sum it up.  

My professional and personal life limped to the finish line slow but steady and starting today, I'm a free bird.  Sort of--if you don't get 5 human beings 12 and under that will accompany me in my flight full time.    But seriously, being a teacher is awesome in so many ways, but June (though half of!), July, and August make it that much sweeter.  

I was anxious about this school year.  My baby was around 9 months old when I returned to work, not sleeping through the night, and with soccer and other activities, I was worried it would be a hard year. What I didn't know is that our family will be hit with a lot of sicknesses (all temporary though--grace!) including yours truly who was down for about 5 days with a bad ear/throat infection.     In addition to this, we would buy a 1920s farmhouse in our dream area that needs LOTS of love and even more work, begin renovating it and go through process of prepping for and putting our house on the market.   A separate post about this purchase is due, but the reason for this big (for us) endeavour was so that our kids could have space to roam around and we could be debt free (or close to it).

Of course, my husband's job had to pick up crazy speed in January and it seems like we've been on a hamster wheel for as long as forever.  

School year started off really well.  My students were wonderful, lots of teaching and learning was happening, and then as soon as I thought about how great everything is going....A few kids with complicated, big personalities got thrown into my mix and my job became a lot more interesting challenging.   One group of kids in particular,  could not have been more diverse in many different ways.  I love diversity, but polar opposite personalities, language levels, and abilities all in the same class present itself a complicated bunch to steer in one direction.  

Slow and steady, limping towards the end there...they too made it and are now free.  

I said good bye to many seniors who grew up right in front of my eyes (transformation from a freshman to senior though) and sincerely wished them the best of luck now that they are free from the 7-2 daily commitment.  

In May, I'm often tempted to sign kids up for summer camps and classes and then I'm thankful that I didn't.   Summer is not the time I want to feel restricted and rush everyone out the door in the mornings.    For us, being free to plan our day however we want to has worked in the past.  This summer, the kids will do some overnight church camps, but those are a breeze to get ready for and are a load of fun for the kids.  

What is different this summer though is that our house is still on the market (SIGN).  So, keeping it presentable with 5 kids living their lives is going to be a challenge.    Showings that are scheduled several hours ahead are grace, but I am getting a little anxious for the whole thing to resolve with an offer.  

Here is to a carefree (ha! totally fooling myself here, but still) summer. Wish you, friends, some carefree days this summer as well!