The Secret of Change is to Focus all of your Energy, not on Fighting the old, but on building the new. ~Socrates

During the summer I had an unexpected opportunity. I was on vacation in Idaho when I heard from the Executive Director of the A.C. Gilbert House here in Salem. For those of you not local, the A.C. Gilbert House is a children’s museum in a collection beautiful old houses down by the riverfront park. We have spent many hours there since Taelin was old enough to walk.
Last year, I did some contract work for them redesigning their field trip offerings. Little did I know that a small contract job would turn into something new and exciting. Starting this month, I am the Education Coordinator for the Gilbert House and will be working there three days a week while Taelin’s in school.
There’s a lot more I could write about this new adventure but if I’m honest the weeks before starting this job were occupied with great hesitation. August was kind of one long Sunday, with lots of worry and wondering about what in the world I was thinking. And since I’ve started and now in my third week we are just trying to get into a new routine.
Monday-Wednesday I will be at the Gilbert House between dropping Taelin off and picking her up from school. Thursday and Friday I am teaching at Taelin’s school. Tuesday and Thursday evenings I’m working at Taelin’s dance studio. I signed a contract with a blog to write four blogs posts a month, although I haven’t heard many details about this yet which I am increasingly okay with.
Oh, and my house will still probably need to be cleaned, laundry done and meals made. (Unless I could talk everyone in my house to eat cereal for dinner half the time.)
It feels big. Like really big. And overwhelming if I get too ahead of myself. Which I do all the time.
I don’t know what is going to happen with this space. I love writing so much. I feel so much more grounded when I write on a regular basis. I wish I had a grand plan for how I am going to make this all happen. But I don’t.
I’m going to try and be better about asking for help. There is never been a time I’ve ever asked for help that Joe hasn’t answered “yes” every time. I’m going to try and menu plan a lot more purposefully to make the evenings I work easier. I’m going to try and be present where I am, when I am there and leave things in the space when I leave.
I need to remember to build the new and not fight the old.  Fingers crossed.

Oh. My. Word. I just made money writing!

I am seriously so excited about writing this post I am probably going to have to reread it far more than usual before I hit publish.  When I first built my 101 in 1001 list, I added #64 in the hopes of pushing myself out of my comfort zone.  What is #64, you ask?  Well, it is “make money writing”.  And today, I get to check this one off the list!

For awhile, I have been exploring the idea, of thinking about the possibility, of maybe doing some freelance writing but it wasn’t until this month that I committed to the idea and actually did something about it. So, earlier this month I made an account on Upwork, a website that connects people that need work done with people that can do it. I figured out how it worked and to my surprise, after my first couple proposals, was offered a chance to write an article.  So, I wrote the article.  Then, they put it on their website. And then, they paid me.


This will hopefully be the first of many opportunities I have to earn money with my writing but this first time is seriously very cool. And a little scary. But, mostly very cool.

And in case anyone here wants to read my article…you can find it here! ACK!

If the ocean can calm itself, so can you. We are both salt water mixed with air. ~meditation, Nayyirah Waheed

A few years ago I took a class on meditation.  I had been feeling anxious about a lot of things and thought, “What could it hurt?!?”  About three minutes in, I knew I had made a good decision and I walked away from the class knowing that meditation needed to be a part of my life.

I read a few books and some things online but it wasn’t until I came across the website calm that I felt like I had what I needed to meditate at home.  There is an app that I absolutely love and it what I use for the most part, although I have the website up in the background right now and I think it is going to be up in the background while I am writing from now on! Continue Reading

Earth Day 2017

I remember when I was in the 3rd grade my dad, who worked for the Soil Conservation Service, came to my school and helped us plant trees.  I don’t remember if it was for Earth Day or Arbor Day or anything formal and I highly doubt that climate change was a part of the conversation, but I do remember planting those trees.

Earth Day is coming up soon.  Next Saturday, April 22nd to be exact.  It strikes me how different a world Taelin is growing up in.  She was just talking this week about the Great Barrier Reef and how much of it is dying because the ocean is warmer than it used to be.

The current political climate is apparently making room for the argument of whether or not all the scientific data we have been collecting for year is even accurate.  So, it seems like this year, there needs to be a little bit more action on Earth Day than just planting a tree.


Our family will be attending the local March for Science to support well…science.  It is a bit baffling that it even needs to be done but we will be there.

I was doing some reading on what else we might be able to do to recognize the day and came upon Billions Acts of Green which shares some very tangible ideas for what people might do to take action for the earth.  I took the ecological quiz and found out if everyone lived liked I live it would take 4.6 Earths to support us.  Yikes. There is only one earth.

What will you be doing to recognize Earth Day this year?

Well, well…what do we have here?

It has been awhile.  68 days to be exact. I don’t know if it is because the Oregon rain hit be harder this year than in years past or if I have been having a Trump media hangover from trying to keep up, but I haven’t been writing much at all lately. Last week, while on vacation, I decided that needed to change.

I realized the other day that it has been a year since I decided to resign from the school district and take a different direction. What a difference a year can make. I can truly say I have no regrets about my decision. That doesn’t mean it has been without challenges. I should have expected, but didn’t, how many questions I was going to have to ask. There have been so many new places I have planted roots and I had to figure a lot of stuff out.

So, am I doing what I thought I would be doing?  Kind of. Continue Reading

Ginger Tea and Twitter


I should be in bed right now.  I am trying really hard to get a good eight hours of sleep but I don’t think that is going to happen tonight.  Here’s a picture of what was happening just 10 minutes ago.


Ginger tea and Twitter.  The ginger tea is because of Twitter. Well, kind of.  I should say I am not blaming Twitter directly.  A few years ago I had a Twitter account that I used for professional development.  I followed my favorite teacher leaders, children’s book authors, publishers, and education news.  I ended up deleting it the beginning of 2015 because my one little word was ‘simplify’.

There is nothing simple about the state of politics in our country right now.  A new president was sworn and and 24 hours later I was out marching with others that were marching around the world.  I, like many others, have been woken up.  Our vote alone is not enough right now.

So, I now have a new Twitter handle and I am following 19 accounts.   A former president, news organizations that are dedicated to actual facts, my two senators and my representative.  A rogue NASA account and an alternate national parks account leave me hoping that no one was fired.

Enter the ginger tea.

My worry about the events that are unfolding are important for me to be a part of.  And because I am paying attention, my worry has manifested into heartburn.  So as I continue to try and stay informed, I will be buying ginger at the store.

Ginger tea and Twitter…because

love is love

womens rights are human rights

black lives matter

climate change is real

immigrants make america great

kindness is everything


“And now we welcome the new year, full of things that have never been” -Rainer Maria Rilke

I have, like many people, made quite a few New Year’s resolutions over the years.  And I, like many people, have failed to keep most of them.  After awhile, I stopped even making them. Then I found out about a tradition that one of my favorite scrapbookers, Ali Edwards, started. She chooses One Little Word to focus on for the year.  It is nothing short of brilliant. If you are interested, and you should be, you can read about here on her blog.

A few years ago, I started to choose a word for myself. Some of my past words have been “peace”, “be”, “grace”, “simplify”. One year I took the course that Ali Edwards offers and it was wonderful but most of the time I just try to live my word as much as I can.

This year, my word came to me pretty easily.  I am excited to live it.


I took the picture of this primrose last week.  The final week in December after a 4 day snow/ice storm.


If you don’t like to read, you haven’t found the right book. -J.K. Rowling

Books are pretty amazing things, don’t you think?  Recently I have been having a lot of conversations with people about books.  Most of these people are between the age of 6-12 and are students at the school where I am teaching.  In school particularly, there is a lot of reading that you “have” to do.  Teachers often pick the genre of book that needs to be read or the topic.  Sometimes a teacher will even just tell a kid,
“This is the book you are reading.”  And sometimes there are good reasons for that.

Continue Reading