What Do You Do in A Day – still part of the blogging 101 series

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Hearing the waves crashing and watching my dog play in the water are such great parts of my day today!

I don’t have to go on vacation to enjoy an expanse of water ( that is Lake Ontario). Sure I may not be going swimming today but just sitting on the shore, in the grasses and watching my dog enjoy the water is so relaxing and soothing I just love it. I remember so many days when I lived in Alberta just wishing I could go to the water because it relaxes me and takes all the tensions away with every swoosh of a wave. A few minutes and life is good again. No drugs, no alcohol, nothing but waves crashing. I feel lucky.

We started the day today the same as always with a visit to the big back yard that is full of mature trees, with busy squirrels gathering nuts. I sip coffee and wake up as poochy tries to get the little fuzzy critters. Two cups of coffee and then he waits patiently for me as I go in and get dressed. It is nice to be so secluded that I can go out in my pj’s and enjoy my morning coffee in the back garden. I feel lucky.

We walk down the quiet street, by now all the school buses and kids are gone to school. We cross the street into a field and we both run and play along a path. He chases something – I am guessing grasshoppers – and I enjoy the sound of the train clicking along the tracks not far off. Life is good. I feel lucky!

Out of the field and not far along the street we come to a fabulous park with a grand forest of old, very big, tall trees. Poochy gets to chase those fuzzy critters some more! He is so happy. And look how fast he runs after them. I gather some acorns, still with their little hats on too. I find some other nuts and add them to my collection. These will go into my science tub for the classroom I am still hoping to get. I like to have real things for my students to see, feel, smell and hold as we learn about them.  Friends show up, it is so nice to see them. The dogs play a bit together. We walk the dogs around the park, and then continue along, talking and chatting. We get to my place and I share my back garden retreat. My friends are surprised. You can’t see it at all from the road and the dog runs all around the big back yard. My dog is glad to be home and lays down in his usual spot, ignoring the spirited pup in his space. My friends go home. I am in my back garden. I feel lucky!

We relax for a bit. I go in the house and have a chat with my beautiful mom. I love being here and being able to see her daily. I missed her when I was in Alberta. It is good to be home. I feel  lucky!

My son enters the room and says good morning. I like being able to see him every day too. He left Alberta before me and I thought I would go crazy. Of course I didn’t. It is good to be close again. I feel lucky!

(It was at this point the dog and I went to the beach.)

How do I finish this feeling so lucky theme? If only I got a full time teaching job I would feel even more lucky? Or if I won so much money in a legal lottery that I didn’t have to work I would feel lucky? Most people would like that!

Life is good now. I have all of Maslow’s basics covered. Loving family, a home, food,clothes, and even a companion dog.

I am lucky. I hope you are lucky too! D Mac.


A Community Event – part of Blogging 101

Today was a challenge to join a community event. Apparently there is a community for bloggers (of course there is). It was difficult to pick one as there are so many events that appeal to me. The different colour scheme of this one (see here) made me pick it.

The challenge is to write about where beep beep boop came from, and how it inspired the staff at WorPress. You know that message we get while we are waiting to write the post. I admit when I first saw it I thought, “Oh that’s so cute!” Because it is cute. So I found a picture and will create a little post about what I think it means.

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The picture is the staff at WordPress, wandering by one  another saying Beep, beep, boop, than laughing hysterically. It is definitely an inside joke. Someone started it, and without real intention, it just became a thing. Or was it intentional? No, wasn’t – it made everyone laugh for reasons even they don’t know. That’s when it got plopped into the site as  a waiting signal for greatness. Meaning all the great bloggers here! Maybe it means, “Blog with us” or ” Just write something” I don’t want to know because it is more fun to make up my own meaning. I am sure somewhere in the cubicles of WP there is a Star Wars junkie that knows the truth……

To me, it means, “Hold that very exciting thought you are dying to share because there are people that want to read it. We are trying to get your site ready for all that craziness to come from your brain, to your fingers, to the page.”

I sit with a small smile as I watch the little blue balls dance under the words and think about what my post will start with. I feel a bit like I am at a starting gate, waiting for the gun to go off so I can start! Thanks WP – I like it!

What do you think it means? Please leave me a comment.  Happy Weekend! Always learning, D Mac.

Happy Fall People!

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Already! But it was so warm I had no idea until someone told me. I had to show both the water and the forest because I just love them both so much. I took my dog to the beach today and had a great walk with him. He chased squirrels and I tried to find some acorns that were not squished. I was not successful.( I will look tomorrow as I want to give them to a friend coming to visit later from a place that does not have acorns.)The air was warm but no humidity, and the sun shining so bright and hot it still felt like summer today. I am glad to be back in Ontario – I am pretty sure Alberta is very cold already and I would not have been able to walk by the beach in Alberta. I packed my summer clothes away and got out the fall/winter wardrobe – it is bittersweet as I love my little summer outfits but then I opened a box of my boots and fall shoes and got excited for them. Except for the real winter boots – you know the ones that have fur lining – and if you don’t know I envy you. I am not a fan of winter and snow. I have had it long enough. Fall walks as the leaves crunch and whats the word I am thinking – rustle. The only time I use this word – The leaves rustled as we walked on them. If you don’t have fall in your area it really is that colourful and amazing. Ducks are flying south -Canada Geese – and lots of other birds go south for winter. Fall has such a great smell to it as well. Fall smells like earthy, dirt, damp, and wonderful smell. Pumpkins are ready and I bought some carving sets today so we can carve Jack O’ lanterns for Halloween. Post me what you do for halloween please. We also have Canadian Thanksgiving in another three weeks – October 12th. We will have a traditional family gathering with a roast turkey and my mom already made two apple pies to go in the freezer until Thanksgiving. Smells so good. Relating back to teaching -as that is what my site is about –  I should be in a classroom now, but if you read my posts you know I am working the tutoring angle and still trying for a teaching position.Oh yes, they are still being advertised even though school has started. I don’t even know if Ontario does a fall break?? Some school boards in Alberta did and others did not have a fall break. Since I am not teaching it doesn’t really matter. May this new season of dormancy and quiet be a useful time for all of you to get your stuff together and be ready for new beginnings when the spring comes. Fall, like the falling leaves is a time to clean out the old to get ready for the new that is coming!! I am starting to design my tutoring flyers with an updated fall photo, and get a website. Websites are a long process if you try to do most of it yourself. (hire some help it’s worth it) Set one up over winter when you have time to focus on it because it is too cold to be outside all day like in the summer. Go clean up your yards, balconies, gardens and even your automobile. Plan stuff to do over winter and prepare it all now while the weather is still fairly warm. Share with me in the comments of your fall activities and possible winter project. Thanks again my dear readers. Yours in Education, D Mac.

Being a New Teacher

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Knowing that you are going to have a struggle getting a job and living through the struggle are two different mind-sets. To begin I felt so confident that it didn’t matter that there are no jobs – I am a lucky person, I will somehow be chosen to be the new teacher. Time fast forward almost three months of applications and not even an interview and the confidence is starting to decrease. Not bad for three months of having nothing but time to ponder, and create scenarios of success and wonderful smiling faces of students that are yet to present. Even earlier today I sent out applications to a couple of schools, with that glimmer of hope that never escaped the jar!! Hope – a tiny word but it is so powerful. It drives me forward and has me here again, inspired to never give up!! Now the creativity is flowing and I am trying to come up with new ideas that I can do to stay in the teaching field but not necessarily be in a classroom. The obvious one is presenter on one of the collaborative unhangouts I meet at every Saturday morning, although it is unpaid, it is so wonderful to share knowledge, get feedback from other teachers and enhance my skill set by expanding to presenter. (similar to teaching but to adults with intelligence) Then there is tutoring, which is a great place, I just have to get one or two clients to get started and then I am generally too busy to take all the families that want me!! I just need those few students to start! (there’s hope again) I think I’m going to create a little animation for “Hope” Truly a feminine trait to add life to formally inanimate objects. Then the other idea is to offer to present at public events such as the next teacher’s convention. Most of the presenters were once teachers or they are teachers. I have some great ideas I just need to organize so they can be presented in an organized, informative fifty minute session to a room full of fellow educators. Literacy, numeracy, “How to Treat your Substitute and Prepare your Class for their Arrival.” This is my key plan right now. I can also do a presentation on “What to expect from the Tutor”. Having been a tutor and substitute teacher for several years now I sure have a lot to say about both. Hey – two seminars!! See, all it takes is a little creativity and I can generate some income!! Wish me luck – of course you’ll all hear about it right here. Yours in Education, D Mac.

Blogging 101- Not What I Expected

Expectations are wonderfully annoying to me, and yet they pop up uninvited all the same. I find they consistently do not coincide with the reality of my life.  Having said that I am asked to put a survey into my blog, it didn’t happen. I could not understand the instructions and it just isn’t working.Today I am asked to link a comment I made on someone else’s post!! Again – not happening as I just do not understand the process or the explanation of how to link my comment on their post back to my post. (it’s confusing just writing it). I would like to thank all the people that comment on my posts – I wish there was a great, easy-to-follow way to reply to your comments but I have no idea how. Thank you to those that follow my blog as well! I really, really appreciate your follows. Again, I do not know how to thank you the way I see others posting under comments thanking the commenter. I thought blogging 101 would explain how to do things in the blog posts, how to add widget – what ever a widget is?- and how to make your site the way you (I) want it. I have not got the site at all how I would like it – do not know how to do things  like I see on other great-looking blogs, and posts and am too frustrated now to worry about it. I spend so much time trying that I end up frustrated and do not even get a post written. So until I get more patience this is the best I have to offer. I often wonder if other people are frustrated trying to do things or set up their posts with no luck?Please know that I appreciate your comments and follows and I hope you continue to read my rants – I will do my best to keep following the blogging 101 course and the writing 101 course. Going to do a workout to relieve some stress! Yours in Education(just not blog education-hehe), D Mac

An Open Letter

September 18, 2015

Dear People,

It would be so much easier to communicate with you if you just spoke honestly and clearly about what you want. I feel that I speak well and communicate what I need and try to make you understand my boundaries. If people could just say exactly what they mean instead of , “you know what  I mean” or “Well, that’s because of who I am”. I do not understand what these sentences mean and it serves me no purpose to hear them. When asking for an explanation I am not trying to be rude or insensitive or difficult – I truly want plain, simple English that I can make sense out of and not have to interrpret. “Well I’m a guy sooooo”  so what? Not all guys are the same and even if they are I am not one so saying that means nothing to me. “Well I am your mother” and…..?? I am a mother too – what do you mean?!!  All I ask is for clear communication – it seems too hard for most of you to give me that so I will continue to go around making my own conclusions – and we all know how grand that is!!   So, sincerely, your confused associate. D Mac

Writing Spaces

AS long as nobody is interupting me I can write anywhere. I prefer a beach or the santuary of my bedroom.   Right now I am in the back garden, with the fountain bubbling beside me, providing a relaxing atmosphere. okay to me this is a boring post nobody is going to want to keep reading so I am done. Let’s see what the next assigment is, hopefully more interesting for both of us. |Cheers!! D Mac.

Success Comes from Surprising Places

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Being able to find a positive from a negative takes creativity, determination and a little imagination.See They Fired Me. I am looking for my freedom, sweet, income-producing, fun career. It also has to serve the community with something useful that will help people around me. Yes, my profile is correct, I am a teacher, I just don’t have my own classroom. So tonight was the beginning of my breakthrough. I get very determined and then try to channel that energy into something positive, creative, and useful for my income. Talking to other teachers, presenting my ideas and ways to teach could be useful. I am so excited because I feel like I am on the edge of the forest, hiking along and if I just keep going a clearing is ahead and my big aha! will be there waiting for me. So any comments about your school or community – what you think they could use for keeping kids healthy, ways to improve the classroom, particularly so your child can learn better/easier. Anything, no matter how small, that you think would help children learn and enjoy classes would be appreciated. I am focusing on the health and fitness area – but a lot of subjects overlap. Physical Education is very important as it builds the foundations for how your child will or will not participate in sports later in life. Gym time is not letting the class run around and scream and throw balls at one another. Teaching the proper form to throw, kick and receive an object are skills that are rarely ever taught. Just let them play a game is not a lesson plan. Having a recreational center where I can have classes for kids is more what I am thinking. Real skills, a real teacher that cares that your children know how to move their body properly, and will understand the importance of all aspects of physical health, including eating, sleeping, stress management, and how to have conversations with people. Conversations are a process of talking, shutting up and listening to someone else talk, and then responding to what the other person said. Interruptions, cutting off and shutting down are not healthy ways to communicate. If you have a teenage you probably have experienced an eye roll or two as a response as well. We need to teach (people) kids how to communicate and use words appropriately, and effectively. I am somewhat scattered here. What do you see as needed in the community for healthy kids? This creates a wide open comment option for a variety of responses but that is what is need to help me find a missing  link  that I may be able to fill. Yours in Education, D Mac

Blogging101 – a quote

Education is the ability to listen to almost anything without losing your temper or your self-confidence.”
― Robert Frost

Oh this hit something in me because it is not always easy to listen to some things and not react. It is so difficult for me to maintain my self-confidence when I don’t get the job,or don’t get whatever it is I was hoping to get. So many times – and yet I must maintain calm and composure to be educated and proper. To lose my temper and raise my voice is so degrading and humiliating I can not even describe the feeling. I work on this always but in the moment I sometimes forget; As most of us do I believe. I want to be the calm and quiet of Meryl Streep in The Devil Wears Prada when I actually feel like spinning my head around and raising my arms while screaming. I am getting there. I am learning to laugh and dismiss a lot of events and comments. I believe it is a sign of an educated individual to be able to be calm and collected and know the right things to say in various situations. Wish me luck!! I am sure it will require insane amounts of physical activity such as boxing, cross training and swimming many laps to burn off the fires that must be contained in this proper, politically correct world we dwell in.Do you relate here?  That’s all I got for this quote.

Robert Frost was an American poet, although his work was published in England first. Some of his famous poems are The Road Not Taken, Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening, and Dreams. There are many more too numerous to list here. https://www.google.ca/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=robert%20frost

Next quote:

“A room without books is like a body without a soul.”
― Marcus Tullius Cicero

This resonates as I am awaiting the arrival of my next sure-to-be favorite book. I look for another one to read as I wait patiently for a book to come through the mail from America. I find a wonderful book about the early, early beginnings of Canada from as far back as the late 1600’s. It is so nice to read and learn. I am not one for the murder mystery or romance of a non-fiction. My mind craves facts, real statistics and stories that are based on truth and building of greatness. It can be anything so long as it is based on reality and teaches me some lesson from those that went before me. I search for novels to engage youngsters to enjoy and embrace reading as a way to escape and go places and see things they may never get to see otherwise. I may be sitting in a lawn chair in a yard, but my mind is way off in some place learning how to fly a hot air balloon, or how to plumb a new sink. (not actually plumbing) As long as I am engaged I am happy. I can not imagine a place without books. I do not mind on line books even, as long as I can read and absorb some experience that may be useful one day to me. I adore the time, effort, and research that authors put into their writing, even fictional books have knowledge that is truthful and real when one researches. I learned so much about the first explorers from Europe and their interactions with the natives of Canada by reading a story-like novel of many short stories that told of the experience. The disease that wiped out thousands, the mistreatment of all people when they were not use to one another and the way that Canada finally settled into a country of relative peace and growth. I do not get from television what books present to my mind, I love the way words so carefully chosen can fill my mind, making me forget where and when and taking me on a fantastic journey to distant times and places. Some are wonderful, some are not  but that is the way life is. Books can be used for so many purposes and I strive to share my passion with children and get them interested in books of all kinds. The more one reads the more knowledge they acquire and the more they are able to contribute to conversation, and become interesting people with interesting things to say and share. Please make sure to do your best to get children and adults involved in reading and find a world of wonder – what ever that may be for them. I love this topic more than I thought I would and I hope my passion inspires someone out there to pick up a book. If it doesn’t interest you then find one that does. What ever your interest I am pretty sure there is a book that can broaden your knowledge on the topic and fascinate you. I wish you all the best and look forward to some great comments. Yours in Education, D Mac

Marcus Tullius Cicero was a Roman politician, lawyer, philosopher and orator and lots more. He was from a time so long ago. He was assassinated in Italy in 43 BC. https://www.google.ca/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=marcus%20tullius%20cicero%20facts