Tag Archives: family

In Memory Of

Today I went to a funeral of a colleague that I have worked with for the last three years. She was a dedicated educator. She gave her life to education, one student at a time. What a sad day. She was young, retirement age, two grown children. One of her children was getting married this fall, while her other child had two small children of her own. My friend spoke to me the day before her surgery about how she was looking forward to the summer and spending time with family and friends. She spoke of retiring and not working as much.

Her death was a tragedy for her family and for education. We all speak of the day that we will retire, or don’t work as much. We want to be with family and friends and spend money that we may have been saving for a long time. We try to prepare by taking care of ourselves both physically and spiritually.

Yes, every day is a blessing. But how quickly those days go by that we quickly forget the ever changing movement of time.  Not only did I reflect about my friend’s death but I reflected on my own life and what is so truly important. I was so glad to be able to tell her children how special and dedicated she was. I’m sure they heard this message from others, from near and far, from those who’ve they’ve known for years or from people like me who only knew her for a few years.

I’m sure that every profession is thought of in a special way. From my own experience, education is a unique profession, we give and give and give of ourselves, hoping to make a difference in the process. Many of us don’t expect anything in return, being able to work with children is the gift. We all have so many memories of children and colleagues that have touched our lives, through tears, worry, laughter, or even just a smile. . But as I get older, I do realize that we are all replaceable. Once we are gone, someone takes our place to take up where we left off.

There is a time to leave and move on. I think we have all been conditioned that we need to work until the last moment, so we have enough to live on,  and so our insurance will last, we don’t want to be bored, if we feel good we want to continue to work at the same pace. Is there a magic number that we reach in years or are we given a sign to help us with the decision of continuing on to the next phase of our life?

The last posting I had was to pause and reflect. How fitting. I do think that every day is a blessing and I am thankful for wonderful friends and family. I hope that I will be guided to do the right thing, make the right decisions at the right time.

You will be missed my friend. Yes, you did make a difference. You did change lives. You were a good mother, wife, friend and teacher. I just wish you had a chance to enjoy all the riches you deserved. My thoughts and prayers are with your family and friends.


A Good Teacher

A good teacher is a brilliant light,

illuminating the prism of a life,

revealing to students a rainbow of possibilities.

by Joanna Fuches



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Homework for Happiness

Homework for Happiness

Shawn Achor, the author of The Happiness Advantage has done work on the brain and happiness and how we can retrain the brain to scan for the good things in life—to help us see more possibility, to feel more energy, and to succeed at higher levels.  Using Achor’s research and findings, Walter Chen, founder of iDoneThis stated four very simple interventions that can over time; actually rewire your brain to see things more positively.  On a productivity blog buffer, Chen stated, “That whenever you do specific tasks over and over again, they take up less of your brain power over time.”   So how do you do this?

  • Scan for the 3 daily positives. At the end of each day, make a list of three specific good things that happened that day and reflect on what caused them to happen. The good things could be anything — bumping  into an old friend, a positive remark from someone at work, a pretty sunset. Celebrating small wins also has a proven effect of powering motivation and igniting joy. As you record your good things daily, the better you will get and feel.  Create a happiness journal or place in a huge container for everyone to see.
  • Give one shout-out to someone (daily). This is a great idea!  Take the positive things you’re getting better at recognizing and let people know you’ve noticed. Take a minute to say thanks or recognize someone for their efforts, from friends and family to people at work. A great way to go about this is by sending 1 daily email to someone. It can be a grade level partner, whose advice you are now appreciating every day. A neighbor you’ve just met. Show courage and say thanks.
  • Do something nice.  Acts of kindness boost happiness levels. Something as small and simple as making someone smile works. Pausing to do something thoughtful has the power to get you out of that negativity loop. Do something nice that is small and concrete.  (Classroom- sharpening a pencil for a friend, Work Team-taking notes and making copies for an upcoming meeting, Family-taking the dog for a walk without being told)
  • Mind your mind. Mindfulness is paying attention to the present moment without judgment. Opening our awareness beyond the narrowness of negativity can help bring back more balance and positivity into the picture.

The lab-validated truth is that happiness brings us more success.  Make it a research project. Try this out with your class, your colleagues, or your family and see if you begin to see any different outcomes in your classroom objectives, your team member’s goals, or your family member’s happiness.

Sounds too simple, doesn’t it.  What would the world be like if we were just a little happier? I see this homework as being heartfelt, healthy, and helpful in being the great person you can be!

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Family Comes First

Just a note to let you know that I haven’t forgotten my blog.  There was a medical situation, and for the end of December and January I have focusing all my attention on family.  I will be back to the blog soon, now that there is more calm at this time.  I appreciate your patience and I look forward to the freedom of expression.  I have enjoyed maintaining and creating new connections on keepitschool.

Take care! and don’t forget to always count your blessings and tell the ones that you are closest to, that you love them!

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