Spidey’s Serene Sunday – Part 191

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“Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes… including you.” Anne Lamott

Thanks, Spidey!

I think we may have read this one together before, but it is so important, I’m glad Spidey brought it to my attention again.

I am constantly on the go; work, family and writing.

It is non-stop, seriously, and I didn’t understand before, the importance of putting myself first at times, and listening to my body telling me I needed time away from the rigours of life.

But I have managed to balance things now, and learned to spot the signals that I need to rest, break away from normality for a while, in order that I stay on track for 99% of the time.

No one can be on it 100% of the time, but we just need to learn when to switch off, and charge up!

I’ll sleep, watch films of programmes I never get a chance to, read, potter about my house, that is what I need to ground myself.

How do you unplug? 😘

Have a peaceful Sunday Peeps ❤ And enjoy your week!

Spidey’s Serene Sunday – Part 190

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“If you don’t imagine, nothing ever happens at all.” John Green, Paper Towns

Thanks, Spidey!

Think, dream, imagine.

Build your future, aiming for those dreams.

The above quote says it all.

If you don’t even dream it’s possible, how can you make it a reality?

Tell me your aims 😘

Have a peaceful Sunday Peeps ❤ And enjoy your week!

Spidey’s Serene Sunday – Part 165 – Achieving Goal

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The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.”

Walt Disney

 

 

A lovely quote Spidey, very fitting for my recent achievements too!

As many of you know, I finally finished writing my first draft on my WIP – my 18-year-old writing project.

I wrote seven chapters before starting the blog in November 2014. Those seven chapters had been crafted fourteen years previously.

That was when my novel dream was born.

And I continued to dream, but life, and maybe an element of laziness crept in.

I mentioned my idea and fledgeling manuscript to a few friends and family members who were encouraging, but I still didn’t actually do anything with it.

Instead, I had babies, then restarted my teaching career.

But my book baby?

That story wasn’t going to write itself.

Plucking courage from the support of fellow bloggers, I posted those chapters, in order to get some feedback and an idea as to whether it was something worth pursuing.

Boy, did those of you who read it give me a jolt! (In a really positive way!)

I needed to continue it! And I talked (wrote) about it incessantly, but another 2 years went by before I actually took to the screen again, to try and achieve my dream.

My #RiNoWriMo project in August added another 60,000 words to the project, and I was exhausted. It wasn’t finished, but I could see the end!

It took another seven months before I took to it again, but I did a lot of ‘talking’ about my teenage WIP… and how I wanted to finish it… before finally taking that last step and getting to the end.

So, instead of talking too much more, I embarked on a Camp RiNo, and just went for it.

And now, I have that full first draft manuscript in my hands, it feels so good!

The dream of publishing it is still a little while away, but the fact that I have a full story written is the first, huge step that I have taken to reach my goal.

And I WILL get there!

Is there anything you have really wanted; a dream you wish to fulfil, or a goal you want to achieve? Tell me about it in the comments, then start planning how you can actually reach it!!!

Stay positive 🙂

Happy Sunday Peeps!

Dream On

Woken up this morning in a bit of a daze.

Not in a bad way, but just a bit strange!

Recently, well, on at least two occasions, I have woken up with the memory of a really vivid dream I was having.

And as I snoozed my alarm, I fell straight back into the dreams, until I could press snooze no more!

And they were strange dreams in that they had people in them who I hadn’t thought of for aeons!

Weird, parallel universe dreams.

Kind of ‘What If’ dreams.

But I wonder, why am I dreaming these ‘What If’ dreams, if I am genuinely happy with my life, with my lot?

I even tried to look it up in my Dreams dictionary, but nothing!

Oh well, I guess I shall be left pondering!

On that note, I bid you a wonderful Friday Peeps, and had better go and get ready for school!

 

When I Grow Up…. #ThrowbackThursday

A post from my archives!

As a 7 year old, I watched the 16 year old head girl of our school wandering around the infant section of our school. Alice House, it was called. We all asked why the big girl was there. Not in a negative way. She was wonderful, helping us with work, and with kind words, encouraging us to do our best.

Work Experience. Oh! What was that? Well apparently she was interested in becoming a teacher, and so she came to us to really see what it was like, working as a teacher, with little people.

This was the moment it really embedded in my brain that there were jobs in this world. You could choose to be something! That was also the moment I decided, without a doubt, that I wanted to be a teacher to little people too!

And from then on, forget university, my training started! I am blessed with a huge extended family. And boy were there a lot of guinea pigs available to be my test pupils!

It was not uncommon to find me in the middle of a group of children, at any given family function.  Most likely, the situation was that the parents went actively looking for me, to foist their children on me. Not that I minded, I loved them, babies and toddlers, little people if all ages. I was in my element!

Fast forward to when I was 15 and sitting my GCSE’s.  It was my time to do work experience.  And I did it exactly where I had first got the seed of inspiration as to what I wanted my vocation in life to be.  Alice House.

This is Alice House. I went up to the attic to find this painting... a treasured memory of my wonderful time there!

This is Alice House. I went up to the attic to find this painting… a treasured memory of my wonderful time there!

It was wonderful to be in that classroom with these little people, and my dream grew.  I was, one day, going to be that inspirational person standing in front of those children.  I was going to make a difference.  I was going to help them cultivate a love of learning, and be someone they remembered fondly.  I was going to have wonderful ideas, and teach them wacky things that would help them along on their academic journey…

All through my A-Levels, I volunteered a morning a week there too, and enjoyed every minute.  It was so great that my actual nursery teacher was still there, and she loved that she had me back in the classroom with her. I experienced other schools as I completed other work experiences too, and my dream was cemented.  I was going to make it a reality.

My UCAS form was filled in, with my course choice – a B/Ed with English & Drama as the specialist subject.  This was such an exciting time!

…but it started to fade…

As I proceeded through the 4 year course, it was obvious that the Government had tampered with education to such an extent, that there was now a strict National Curriculum for us to follow. There  were standard assessments, and topics that had to be covered in certain ways, and then results to be formulated in various manners… form filling, pen pushing, red tape…

Hang on, where were the children in all this???

I didn’t recall all this form filling, and stress on the teachers I had worked with.

Nearing the end of Year 3 of my degree, I clearly recall a phone conversation I had with my mother.  I was sat on the stairs of the house I was living in, and I told her I didn’t think I could carry on with this farce of a course that was masquerading as Teacher Training.  “It’s not about the kids anymore mum.  It’s all about scores, and piles of paper.” At that stage I had experienced 3 block teaching practices, and been snowed under by all the planning and assessments that were required.

My days were filled with stress of what to teach, and how, so I got those scores required at the end, not about the enjoyment of the child, or whether they had any interest in what they were learning.

Needless to say, I finished my degree. At least I knew I had that behind me. But I had no inclination to find a teaching job. My dream was shattered.

I spent the next nearly 14 years working in retail, in banking, in marketing, getting married, building a home, having a family, and I was pretty happy with all that was happening.

Once in a while Hubby Dearest would ask me whether I would consider school as a career again.  But I was still adamant.  This was no longer my dream.  It was just a fantasy, and the reality that I had been shown was far removed from the ideals I had formed.

It was the needs of my children that actually pushed me back into the education sector.

I was working full time, and my Mother in Law was looking after my children during the day. Lil Man was in full time school, and seemed to be struggling. Lil Princess was still a mere 3 year old tiddler.

Mum was concerned that she couldn’t help her grandson in the way he needed, with regards to school work, and I was home so late that it was hard for me to sit with him for the time he needed, to do things together.  So, after a lot of thought, I handed my notice in at the marketing job I had held for 9 years.

It was wonderful having that childhood time back with my kids. I looked for part time jobs but nothing came up.

Then a friend, who is also a parent of one of my son’s class mates, mentioned there was a teaching assistant job going at school. It would be ideal, hours wise, and I would get the holidays with the kids too.  No stress, no planning or paperwork, but working with kids again, and not having the pressure of a teacher. Sounds good right?

Well, I went for it, and the job was mine for the taking. (Think about it though, a qualified teacher, at Teaching Assistant money, which school would refuse that??!)

It was a wonderful way to make me realise my dream, though it was a little faded, slightly jaded, was still there, in the back of my mind. And with the weeks, and months of being within the school environment, the dream started to sparkle again, it gained clarity, and my main focus became to get myself back on that horse.  I wanted to take the reins, fully  Have my own class, plan, assess, educate!

I was in a much better position than I had been during my degree. I was older, with more life experience. I had seen far too many younger Newly Qualified Teachers crack under the stress of teaching, where the work/life balance is so unevenly placed.  The expectations on each individual so high, and at times, unrealistic. It was no wonder they didn’t want to carry on.

But I made a huge decision, fully informed, after being in school for 3 years, that I wanted to get back into teaching. My own two children were that much older, and not to say they didn’t need me any more, but they were more mature, and settled, and able to cope with life, knowing mummy might be a bit busy, or stressed during term time

As you all know, I did a course, to update my qualifications, and within the course time, the job I am in now, came up.  My head teacher was all for me getting the role, and even though she wanted it to happen too, I had to go through all the official procedures, and interview to get the job.

If you have been reading since September, you’ll know I have had a pretty, ahem, colourful start, with a very ‘interesting’ mix of children in the nursery.  My Co-Teacher, who has been teaching Early Years for 13 years, said to me the other week that she felt awful for me, having such a bunch as my first official class.

I’d like to think of it as a Baptism Of Fire! You know, I am exhausted.  I have never felt as tired as I do right now I am counting the days, hours, minutes to half term which starts next Friday at 3.45pm, so I get a week off. It has been really tough. I never thought it would be like this, but WOW!

I always knew nursery was not just ‘all play’ like many think it to be.  I mean yes, it is play, but constructive play, play with meaning, and a time to hone many skills, embed many behaviours that a child needs in both their academic, and personal life.

Yes, it has been tough, probably the toughest 6 weeks I have gone through in a long time, but it has been rewarding too, honestly. There is a huge corner we need to get these children to turn, but I can, at last, see the bend.  There are changes happening, slowly but surely. The children that were causing us the most difficulty are starting to settle.

I’m not entirely sure they are going to be reciting their ABC any time soon, or solving equations, but we may just get them to become decent human beings at least!

Is this what I had dreamed of?

Was this what I wanted to be doing with my life?

Is this teaching?

It’s not quite what I had expected. but yes, knowing I am doing something with these children, making a difference, is exactly what I wanted to be doing.  I am teaching, but not the subject matter I thought I would teach. It’s more life skills and behaviour.

Ask me again in July, how I feel about these children, and the challenges we have faced…

But for now, I can definitely say I have grown up to be what I always wanted to be!

My interactive peeps!

Peeps are reading in…

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