Edited to note:  I forgot today was Thursday (it’s really not Friday, are you SURE?).  Lame Jeopardy Story will follow later today.

My second class of the day ends at 10:15 and I don’t have another until a little before noon every day. At 10:15 I am mostly ravenously hungry and want to devour my lunch. But, I make myself wait until 11–because it’s not lunch if you eat it before 11 and also because I am super powerful. Oh, yeah.

I hereby call upon all teachers to go watch THIS if they have not yet already. Today I wrote on the board “How dare you waste my time with less than your best.” AMEN.

NaNoWriMo Update: Currently 15,000 words + behind. I am having delusions that the part of my 5-day Thanksgiving weekend that falls in November will be spent curled on my couch, pounding furiously on the keys, and making a miraculous finish around 11:59 Friday night. Ignoring the fact that Thursday will be spent at my parents and Friday or Saturday will probably be blown wedding dress shopping while my sister is in town–so really Wednesday is my only hope for 38,000 words. Woo delusions.


I woke up yesterday morning and the world was completely blanketed in fog.  As I began to drive to work, the fog was so dense it was hard to see the road.  I smiled, because I love fog.  There’s something quiet about fog–this gray mass blanketing everything and keeping the world soft and misty.  There’s something fairy-tale like about it–as if I had woken up in another dimension–and that was nice because this dimension isn’t very awesome right now.

But, then I got onto the highway and the layer of fog was gone–replaced by a unseasonably warm, sunny morning.  The mist and magic evaporated and I still had to go teach students who seem to have been programed not to listen.
NaNoWriMo Update:  Yeah…not so much.

But, planning  a wedding is a wee bit stressful.  I don’t think it helps that, despite being a simple, no-frills girl with very little diva in me, I am terrible at making decisions.  I can do it (better than R.) but, I am really bad at the process of it.  I don’t weigh options well.  I get tired of thinking and say, I give up–whatever!

Only, very little gets accomplished if I do this when it comes to a wedding.  Especially when you are trying to find a location and these are your criteria:

  1. After June 13th, but before August 1st.
  2. No church
  3. No outside if July
  4.  Fits 150+
  5. Not downtown or on Hwy 40 (which is a major highway that will be shut down all next year).
  6. Preferably, ceremony and reception at the same location.
  7. Not too fancy.
  8. Not a dump or a ripoff.

So, the weight that was once my portfolio, is now finding a place to have a wedding when I want to have it AND when my bridesmaids (i.e Sister 1) can be there.  I wish I had it in me to elope, but I want my extended family and friends there too much to do that.

NaNoWriMo Update:  I am back to thinking I cannot do this, do not want to do this, how in God’s green Earth did I think 2,000 words (bump that up because yesterday I didn’t even get to 100) was doable.  Do they provide a NaNoWriMo medication that evens out these highs and lows?  I don’t know what I’m going to do–try–not try–what I wouldn’t give for a lunchtime nap.

Today is Sister 1’s (I have 2 sisters, both younger, but sister 1 is the older of the two) birthday.  We have a lot of November celebrations in my family (Dad’s birthday, Parent’s Anniversary, Sister’s Birthday, Thanksgiving).  So, it is like a 9-day long cake fest–which is awesome.  Except sister is off in Baltimore trying to save our education system before she goes to med school to save people’s lives.  She is a freak and it has meant much less cake.  Luckily, I made Brownies on Saturday and I will be having a Brownie Sundae in her honor.

Also today, and much more exciting (sorry s1), my portfolio is due.  Which means, I AM DONE WITH MY PORTFOLIO!!!  Which also means, only one class left and some fingerprinting and some time-sheet-turning-in and some processing and then I am a certified teacher.  Woo.   I feel oddly not-relieved, as if perhaps I am in shock that this behemoth is finally complete.

And, finally, NaNoWriMo Update:  Last night I couldn’t sleep.  I was missing my Grandma T. and wallowing in all that sadness.  I got tired of tearing and sniffling so I got up, marched over to my computer, and decided that if I pound out 2,000 words a day I can still make NaNo–and with no portfolio in my way, I can DO that if I keep at it.  So, I didn’t not pound out 2,000 words, but I got really close and I feel a bit reinvigorated about the process (though the content is going even further downhill than I thought possible).  I’m at a respectable 11,651. 18 more days and roughly 39,000 more words.  I just have to keep reminding myself that I CAN DO THIS!

5.  One Writer’s Beginnings by Eudora Welty:  I read this book my senior year of high school for my A.P Language class.  In Welty, I found a kindered spirit.  A quiet child more interested in a book than much else.  She talked of confluence and memory and all of things resonated in a way I didn’t quite understand until I took a creative nonfiction class three years later.  It was yet another book that affirmed to me that I could be a writer.

4.  Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell:  This book is really one of the most influential books in my writing life.  I read the 1,000+ pages of Gone With the Wind enthralled.  I think it took me a week tops to read this book.  At the end, I had two warring thoughts.  The first was Rhett’s little soliloquy about something being broken never being put back together again, and sometimes it is better than way–because the “fixed” pieces can’t ever stand up to the memory of the whole.  The second thought was how a woman could write 1000+ pages of interesting, descriptive, fascinating text.  This huge volume of work held me from beginning to end and when I was done I wanted to write (maybe not 1000 pages).

3.  Small Wonder by Barbara Kingsolver:  This book of essays was so much about… peace and gentleness.  The first time I read it I didn’t care so much about the political aspects of it all.  However, when I reread it this summer–putting a few years of growing up in there–I became so attached to it.  I hate pieces of art (books, movies, whatever) that are completely dark and negative.  The world is hell and it’s only going to get worse.  The world is a scary place, terriying and hurtful at times, but I have to believe that there is good in this world and the hope of this good and living in that hope is what Kingsolver talks about in her essays.  And to me, there is very little more profound than hope.

2.  The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger:  This is the type of book that you cry through.  It’s the type of book that’s emotionally exhausting and there’s none of the happy ending that I’m usually drawn to.  But, despite it’s fantastical elements, it was so real.  It was all about the real, cruel aspects of love and life.  But there was hope behind it–that love is real and that it is right to fight for it, even if it is fleeting.  This book made me realize what I had and gave me an insight into what love truly was–not perfect and pretty, but hard and gritty and still worth it.

1.Prodigal Summer by Barbara Kingsolver:  I read this book my sophomore year of college.  I can vividly remember laying on my lofted bed in this small, smelly(thanks to roommate) room poring over her words and crying.  The underlying theme of Prodigal Summer is all about solitude and loneliness and finding love–and not necessarily romantic love, just love.  It was a time I felt completely alone.  I was away from my family and felt like I was not a part of their lives.  My small little group of friends had a habit of manipulation and an inability to really let it go and be friends at that time.  We were a bunch of goody-goodies going through our high school clique phase trying to figure out who we were and where we belonged and there were definitely times when we were not kind to each other.  This book, at its very core, made me realize that I could feel alone–but I wasn’t actually alone.  That solitude WAS merely a “human presumption” and that there is a connection that binds us all.  That was a turning point in my life.  I began to rely less on everyone else, less on what other people thought–and worried about making myself the person I wanted to be, because I wasn’t alone.

NaNoWriMo Update:  If you really want to finish NaNoWriMo, I don’t recommend getting engaged.  I’ve written maybe 100 words in the past three days.  I’m going to try to make up this deficit this weekend, but we’ll see how it goes.

So, I got quite a few questions from students about my ring yesterday.  In one class they demanded to know how and where!  To which I returned, “I am sorry, but it creeps me out to talk to you guys about this.”

I have a few students that I’m really quite fond of, but I am really wary about making those “personal” connections to my life.  I’ve been taught not to, and honestly very few of my own teachers discussed their lives in depth.  (I did have a philosophy professor who told us about her free love days in the ’60s and that was WAY too much info).

The thing I was amazed about it, I can say something 10 times a class period, I can write homework in huge letters on the board and READ IT TO THEM, and they proclaim that they never saw it.  And yet, they manage to observe my ring.  They are not fooling me any longer!

Anyway, later to day I’ll post my lame Jeopardy story Thursday post.  I watched Jeopardy yesterday and they had some DOOZIES!

P.S  (I promise not EVERY post from here on out will be about engagement or marriage!)

NaNoWriMo Update:  I wrote about a paragraph last night bringing my total up to 10,207.  It’s amazing how it happens the same way every year–the first week I keep my word counts, then everything goes downhill from there.  Although, I did find this week’s pep talk rather helpful because it talked about writing ten words when you’re stuck.  Because, sometimes it will lead you to something else and sometimes it won’t, but at least you’re still writing and the novel is still on your mind and if you just don’t write one day it’s a lot easier not to write the second day.  It helped me last night, I was going to forget about it after spending the hours of 3-7 on the phone, but instead I put ten words + a few and still feel a bit hopeful about the process.

I feel like my brain has been scrambled.  The past 18 hours have been rather insane.  I did not expect to, you know, get engaged that particular day.  I mean, I think it’s actually a bit overdue, but I’m still in a little bit of shock that it happened YESTERDAY and now I am wearing this ring on my finger and thinking about colors and bridesmaids and summer weddings.

R. and I met at a state park when we were both working seasonal jobs there back in ’04.  We didn’t start dating until he got a “career” job and left the park.  Our first date was July 5th–which, in this bizarro world that I live in–just happened to be the anniversary of my parent’s first date.

Fastforward 3+ years to yesterday, where R. proposed to me at that state park where we met–in my favorite spot, on a cold but beautifully colorful fall day.  It was where I used to dream about being proposed to–and the fact that it actually happened there is quite wonderful.  However, R. in all his glorious timing managed to propose on my parent’s wedding anniversary.  So, every milestone in our relationship is also a milestone in my parent’s and, I’m not going to lie, it’s a little creepy!

I just need to make sure we pick a wedding day that has absolutely NO connotation with my parents.

So, on top of trying to finish this portfolio, participate in NaBloPoMo & NaNoWriMo, teach, and have a moment of shut eye or two–I am also beginning to try to figure out if a late June wedding would be possible as my Mom claims it will not be.

So, while I’m espousing plagiarism and credible sources to my students, I am thinking of white gowns and flowers and, yes, actually getting married to the man I love.

NaNoWriMo Update:  Thanks to a decently long lunch break, I managed to pound out my words yesterday.  We’ll see if today produces the same results.  Right now I am at 10,130.  Woo.

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