Working from home

As a teacher I honestly never expected to be able to work from home. I know a ton of teachers that absolutely despise it. Maybe it’s because I have nothing to compare it too but it’s not the worst thing. There are a lot of things I wasn’t prepared for nor was I expecting. IT is a ton of extra work having to do it online, (if this were a long term thing it would be easier the next year because this year we’ve made all the extra stuff). However, now that my mother in law is helping out a few times a week, it’s not so overwhelming. I have also found a good rhythm with work so it isn’t so overwhelming either.

On Fridays my mother in law is unavailable so me and the hubby alternate who has which toddler to take care of while working. It’s a divide and conquer kinda thing, and it works. On days that I have Sunday it is exceptionally hard but as she gets older it is getting a little easier. I just have to have numerous snacks available and a few easy to do crafts that if she eats it no big deal.

Dalton is easier I just set up a bunch of activities and he chooses them all. His supplies are in the ziplock bag and in his school box so he can grab and go on his own. We sit at the table together so that he’s not alone and in between direct instruction we can have brief conversations. We get to talk and enjoy each others company and then it’s back to work. I was able to get some clips from a day in my life working from home.

Do you work from home during this pandemic? If so what does that look like for you?

Starting on my goal

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I think I already mentioned that my goal this year is balance. That is the theme of my year. Balance.

I want to have it all, call me greedy I guess. I want to have a fulfilling career and still come home and get quality time with my family. I want to fill my house with laughter and memories, I want to not feel stressed and overwhelmed by not being perfect at it all. I want to feel more patient with my children and less overwhelmed by the things I need to do for my students.

I realized something after only 1 quick semester of teaching and that is that I am no longer being graded by perfect papers and clever lesson plans. My students don’t know that I don’t have 5 years under my belt. They are not grading me. Yes I have my bosses looking at what I am doing but for the most part, I can just teach if we try something that fails we just go okay back to the drawing board and instead of worrying about not seeming like enough of a teacher, I know they are learning a growth mindset from me modeling one.

My children don’t care if their dinner is perfect or the house is spotless. They just care that they got to be included in whatever I do and that we are all enjoying being near each other. They aren’t grading me either. I don’t need to impress anybody but my children and a happy mother giggling at their antics and then cuddling up and reading together is all it takes to WOW my kids and they are the only ones I really want to wow.

It has been refreshing, I actually started doing this around Thanksgiving but with the new semester I am already seeing a huge change. I’m happier, my children are happier, my marriage is happier (because I get to actually spend quality time with my husband instead of being so tired from not being perfect and staying up way to late every night working). I do have to remind myself that it’s okay to take time to get a haircut, or time to make cookies and leave the mess for tomorrow. It’s ok, to take time for me.

So far three months into this mindset and I am not only feeling happier and less overwhelmed but I am also more productive which adds to feeling happy for me. Also I have stuck to my schedule two weeks in a row with videos wahoo! Which is the longest I have gone in an entire year!

Here is my most recent video I hope you enjoy.

Backyard dreams

For a long time I have dreamed of being able to open up the curtains to my big sliding doors and look outside at my kids playing while I ran through the house and yard doing house work and could be happy knowing they had a safe backyard to just be kids in while I got stuff done. I know it sounds silly, but I enjoy doing yard work and working in the garden and it is so nice that Sunday and Dalton can play in the yard happy as kids should be. Listening to the play, watching them explore together it was just an amazing feeling today watching them.

We decided to get them a swing set for Christmas, we found one for an excellent price and it is perfect for both Dalton and Sunday. Neither will out grow it too quick and it can be modified as they get bigger. It was fun getting to set it up and have Dalton guessing what it was that we were building.

I really am so happy that we were able to do something like this. I can’t wait to watch the back yard continue to turn into something enjoyable and beautiful for my kids to enjoy in the remaining years that we will live here. IT will also help when it comes time to sell in a few years because a finished backyard is a lot of curb appeal!

Days like today I could enjoy for another decade, I say that, but when the heat hits I will go through my yearly panic over being stuck suffocating in the desert. Until then I will enjoy each day.

January 2021

I feel like January is the obvious time to reflect and improve. I am also a person who believes when you get the desire to challenge and grow you should not wait until the new year. Just do it, set those goals whenever and start on them even if inspiration doesn’t show until November.

I don’t really want to think to much about the scary stuff from 2020 but it has been amazing watching Dalton and Sunday grow closer. It has been wonderful closing the chapter on school and opening the next chapter after a long 5 years.

I can’t believe that Sunday is almost 18 months old and that Dalton is 4!!! How did that happen so fast! I am constantly amazed by the little day to day life. I feel lucky and blessed to have my children to be their mother. I can’t imagine life without them, and my heart will always hurt for those unable too and those who are still trying. I know many of my intial readers were in the IVF boat with me and I know the pains we took as we pushed through it all.

Sorry, off track, it’s easy to do when talking and reflecting about something that was so life consuming for so long.

I am so happy to be starting this next year. I get worried about job security. Especially since we just purchased a vehicle that I love but always the commitment to another payment bothers me. I really hope things will balance out and go back to some sort of normalcy.

Stress is so easy to find, this year I am trying to focus on balancing the stress so that it doesn’t take away from these memories I should be enjoying with the children. This phase of life will fly by so quickly. I remember when my sweet Adin was only 4 and here he is now 16 thinking he’s grown and it terrifies me how quickly this time will fly by. I want to enjoy the most out of this time.

Some of my goals include being better with time management so that I can spend more time with kiddos and less time feeling overwhelmed by all the chores of life, paperwork, grading, lesson planning, meal planning, cleaning …etc… So by making sure I put more focus in during specific time frames so that I can enjoy more time with the kids. For the most part I have learned there will always be another todo list, more paperwork and chores but only so many time the kids will ask me to hold them or play with them and then eventually they will stop wanting those things. I am in no way ready for when they stop being cuddly and wanting me all the time, so instead of dreading that day I will enjoy what I have now and not stress about the endless chores and paperwork.

I have goals to pick up the camera more and record the kiddos as often as possible because I want to remember and cherish it all.

Here are the couple of videos I have posted so far 🙂

Backyard renovations begin

For years I have dreamed of having a backyard that we could enjoy. My husband is A mechanic and a carpenter. Which means our backyard has been full of projects.

My mother in law who used to live with us Used to use the backyard like storage She did not like throwing things away. Between projects and storageIt has not been a very pretty backyard.

We used to have an above ground pool And a fence dividing the yard So that the dogs had somewhere to go to the bathroom and run around. The Above ground pool fell apart. We decided not to get a new pool Because I am terrified of the little kids somehow getting in thereWithout me.

Instead we created an area that kids could play which has been a ton of work. But it is coming along nicely.

I miss writing

I miss writing so much. It helps me clear my mind, it helps me focus. I have been so busy trying to juggle my new list of responsibilities with my job and working from home that writing has fallen to the back burner.

I am trying to figure it all out and everytime I think I have the hang of everything the school district seems to throw on more. But I am trying, I miss writing, I miss making my videos. I’m just not sure how to squeeze it all in.

I am loving being a teacher even if my first year is not what I expected due to COVID, and now my state is threatening to shut things back down due to a rise in numbers (it’s also flu season so I’m not sure why we’re suprised in a rise in numbers)…

I want it all, an organized classroom, well adjusted kids who are enjoying working from home and doing all the crafts, a clean organized house, time to write, time to edit videos. I’m just not sure how to do it all. But seeing as this is my second post in the same month I’m counting it as a win!

hopeful and sad

I’ve been struggling lately. The heat does that to me. I went home for 2 weeks and it was wonderful. I was able to get into nature and out of the heat. Aspens are native to my home. I love aspesn, the sound thier leaves make when the wind blows. The color of their bark. The shades their leaves change in fall. The beauty of them with ice hanging from the limbs. I love them.

They don’t grow in the desert where we live. I feel like an aspen in the summer of the desert. I feel like I can’t grow and breathe, like this places sucks the joy from me. But I have hope, I hope that we can move back to the aspens where I thrive. We are getting closer. In just a few years we will be there. Most the time I can remain positive and focus on the steps to make it happen.

I still struggle. I struggle when I look around and I’m exhausted and hot. I’m tired of my tiny house and my dirt yard that has too many unfinished projects laying around. I’m worried it will be hard to sell our house since it has had a lot of love over the years. But either way we will try our best to get a good deal outta her.

I can’t wait to be able to move in 2 years we should be lined up to be financially ready and then once we secure a job we will be good to go. I hope it goes smoothly I am really looking forward to getting out of here. I can’t wait to raise my kids up north in the mountains with 4 seasons.

I can’t wait to be able to see the stars every night, (exception of storms) and have an acre or more to play on. I can’t wait to have a garden that could actually support us through the whole season. I can’t wait to plant our lives and watch them grow. We have worked so hard to get to the point we can even start planning. I’m not going to lie, I have stayed up late more than once to look at homes for sale.

I can’t wait to get to life as normal but for now I will focus on one thing at a time. The next step is moving forward to greener (literally!) pastures.

Enjoying dreaming…

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I know I am making my husband nervous when I start talking about moving. I know change is really hard for him, I know that the idea of leaving what he is comfortable and used to is scary for him but I’m so darn excited at what is yet to come.

We have literally been talking about the idea of moving for over a decade. I am happy that we are getting so much closer to getting there. We are only a couple years away and I’m excited! I can’t help but to dreamabout it! I’m ready for this chapter so much! I’m so ready for the part where we get to pick out a house together… I’m excited to find somewhere for us to call our home and move out of the city. To move out of the heat and desert. The small town life and the mountains has called to me my entire life!

My life started in a small mountain town and I have always wanted to get back to it and raise my kids in a small town. My Husband is also from a small mountain town and has wanted to move back to one for a very long time. The problem is that we have both been stuck in the city trying to make smart choices so that when we could finally move that it would be a successful move. My husband and I have both (not when we were together) have tried to move away before and ended up back in the city, I was only 17 when I moved and it was during a major recession so my plan was not even a little bit thought out and failed. My husbands was better thought out but his partner at the time got to homesick, was pregnant and convinced him to move back so she could be near her mom and that was the last time he tried to move… 22 years ago…

So I think he is nervous and I am also a bit nervous but have put a lot more time into this plan. We have been patient and have waited for the right time and opportunity and now that timing is getting more prevalent it’s a bit scary to take that plunge but I’m so excited… but I am enjoying dreaming about it! I am enjoying how completely capable we are this time. How completely doable it will be for us to move!

Feeling like me again…

Getting out of the house and the heat is much needed. Coming up north has been wonderful for my soul! I needed this! I needed to be in the mountains with my feet in the ice cold stream. I need to feel the energy of life in the soil and air and trees. I needed this more than I realized!

Being on lockdown has sucked. The beginning wasn’t too bad because we just spent every waking moment outside in the air. Then the heat came, the incredibly life sucking heat of the desert came and slowly sucked away my sanity, leading me towards depression without me consciously realizing it. Due to Covid the things we normally do to keep sane during the heat we are unable to do. Slowly but surely the paranoia and fears were beginning to control my life.

Up here in the small northern town in the mountains Covid feels more like a rumor then it does in the city. The city you see it, it’s in your face every waking moment, people are hospitalized and dying way to regularly to think it’s only a rumor. But here, you can go outside and breathe the mountain air.

I’m feeling more focused, more like myself. Determined to face the next couple of years. We will have to save up and stick to a strict budget so that we can move forward. But it can happen, it will happen. I want to move away from the desert and away from the heat. I want to be close enough to my siblings to see them on the weekends not only once a year. I want to be able to drive 2 hours in any direction and be open to adventures.

We can’t do that in all the heat we’d have to drive at least 4 hours in one direction and 5-8 in all the others in order to escape the adventure. That far away requires a lot of planning. But in the north we are in the mountains enough to enjoy life a whole lot more. My husband is nervous of leaving the safety of the city for employment. His job is nontransferable to the country, but I think we can do it. I know we can, but he’s going to have to find something new or accept the role of stay at home dad. I have remained in the desert for 12 years because of him, because of my love for him runs so deep. But I need him to follow my lead this time, he loves the mountains and it calls to my soul. I can’t see living in the desert any longer. Not when its not a necessity. I have a plan, now it’s time to execute it.

Those who really know me, know that my planning and determination will take us far. He says he wants to go, but I can feel his hesitation. I won’t hesitate though, not on this. I have calculated the time and resources need and in 2-3 years we will be in the mountains. Where I belong where my soul is happiest. Where mother nature beckons me. I have found myself again, and I know what I need to thrive. My soul is can’t breath in the heat, it needs the mountains.