Monday, June 9, 2008

Pros & Cons List: The Pre-Vacation Edition

Olivia and I are going to Vermont in three short days. Here's a list of pre-vacation issues.

I broke my favorite (and only) prescription sunglasses.

Pro: No one in Vermont can appreciate DKNY sunglasses anyway.

Con: Dude - they're my favorite glasses and they don't make them anymore!

WWIII has erupted among my in-laws.

Pro: They're not the one's I'm visiting on vacation.

Con: My husband has to stay home and deal with it.

In a packing preparation frenzy, 9 loads of laundry were done.

Pro: My mom did it for me.

Con: Having to be 26 & still ask your mom to help with laundry.

I always have to clean my entire house before going on vacation.

Pro: Come home to a clean house.

Con: Or not because my husband is staying home.

I won't have Internet access in Vermont.

Pro: I'll get to enjoy the scenery and beauty that only a New England summer can provide.

Con: How will I keep up with Bossy, Mir and Dooce for over a week?

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Closing Out

Today is the last day of school for Olivia. First grade was a challenge for her; she was called out on her bullshit a lot this year, she faced challenges with friendships and grew in so many ways. It was a year of huge successes; she was on Honor Roll for all 4 quarters; learned that she couldn't always breeze through everything with great ease and finally developed an understanding of what it is to treat people how you want to be treated. This is the last year she'll have Mrs. Read to charm and next year, she's getting a much tougher teacher; one we know she won't be able to manipulate with her bright smile.
For me, this year has been a learning experience. I started the beginning of year with a new, official role as a volunteer and it literally changed my life. The lessons I've learned are possibly greater than Olivia's. I learned how to maintain my dignity in the face of true aversion. I've learned how to deal with parents on a professional and straight-forward fashion without being abrasive or rude. The relationships I've cultivated with entire families this year have been priceless and one's that I'll hold onto for a very, very long time. I made a lot of mistakes, flew by the seat of my pants and had to clean up a lot of my own shit but I raised a lot of funds, organized community events and family involvement projects. The kids have had the greatest impact on my life; working with them on a daily basis has been more fun than I thought it would be. They made it all worthwhile when, while flipping through their school scrapbooks, I found that most of them listed their favorite school memory, activity or lesson involved me.
I'm looking ahead to next year a little wiser, a lot braver and maybe with some new organizational skills. I already have a summer to-do list as issued by various teachers, administrators and myself of things to plan, organize, clean and set-up; I cannot wait.
Before that, though, I am taking a break. First, a much-needed vacation to the New England mountains. Then I'm going to come home and focus on my own life for a little while before diving back into the swing of school. I have my own closets and pantries that have been severely neglected this school year. I cannot remember the last time I cleaned my ceiling fans and really - that's just plain gross. And I'm going to spend so much quality time with my husband that he's going to be so sick of me and beg me to go back to spending umpteen hours at school.
Yup. That's the plan.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

This conversation actually occured today

Between a male technician (50+ years old) and me at 8:56am.

Me: Hi? Why are you here?
Him: ::blank stare:: Um, I'm a-pickin' up this a-paperwork and filters.
Me: ::confused look:: Didn't {boss} tell you to go to {customer} in Miami?
Him: ::continue blank stare:: Uh, I think-a she said something about eh meeting.
Me: No. There is no meeting today. Why are you at the office at 9am when you were supposed to be in Miami at 1st call.
Him: ::walking away from me:: Eh, ok. So what-a-do-a-you-a-want-a me to do? You tell me.
Me: I want you to tell me where the miscommunication happened so it doesn't happen again.
Him: ::still walking away:: I will call {boss}.
Me: Fine. Why didn't you go directly to Miami?
Him: I didn't know it was supposed to be first thing in the morning.
Me: Yes you did. What is this you say about a meeting?
Him: Oh, well-a, I guess she didn't say anything about a meeting.
Me: Ok. Why are you late?
Him: ::enters work truck:: Oh-a-kay. See you later. ::drives away::

And this is a small example of the frustrations I face at work. I have similar conversations like this multiple times a day.

You can understand now why I smoke and eat like it's my last day?