Monday, November 30, 2009

I think way too much. Sometimes I feel too much. I'm getting ready for Christmas, and things have changed-there are different people to buy for, and some people to not buy for anymore. That's hard-saying good bye to a chapter in your life, especially when you don't understand things.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Along For The Ride

I'm working on my 2nd commission of the Christmas season-a very odd request. I was requested to do a rooster on a motorcycle. My client explained that her mother loved roosters and the mom's boyfriend loved Harleys.

I had a hard time starting this project even...I didn't know where to start or if I could successfully pull it off. I admit it, I dragged my feet a bit. But the sketches are done. And the two main concepts are pretty incredible. They scream biker rooster in my opinion.

The sad news, and my heart was broken when I heard this, was that the mom's boyfriend died the other day after battling cancer for 7 months. I understand how important this project is and I'm honored to be a part of the journey.

The client comes tomorrow to choose a sketch and approve color/glass samples. I'll keep you all posted.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Why Teach?

The last couple of days I have been giving a lot of thought about my students and my career in general. I guess you could call it self reflection.

One of my students actually asked me the other day why I became a teacher. I've explained it before, but never to a 10 year old. I've wanted to be a teacher since I was in Kindergarten. I loved school, and I loved learning. But at that very young age, school was one of few safe places I had in my life. My teachers were my role models and I wanted to be just like them. And it's probably that kind of thinking that got me through for years.

I also knew early on though that I loved kids, and I had a gift. I had a way with younger kids. Early on, I helped out wherever I could. In grade 6, I gave up lunches to act as a supervisor in the Kindergarten room.

By high school, my reasoning went a step further. I wanted to be the teacher that my teachers had been for me. I wanted to be the safe person that a child could trust, while instilling my love of learning. I wanted to give back.

By the time I reached my education degree, it really was about all those things, and something so much more fundamental. Teaching was my passion. It was where I came alive. Despite missing out on so much of my childhood, I was able to live it vicariously through my students while promoting education, safety, respect, and life skills. Teaching wasn't exactly a choice, it was more like my calling. I didn't choose it, it chose me.

Teaching is not as easy business. It's hard, stressful, little pay, and it can burn you out like you wouldn't believe. There were times where I questioned should I continue teaching, especially when jobs were scarce. But at the same time, it is so rewarding. I love seeing my students every day, seeing their smiles, seeing their "A-Ha" moments when they discover something new, and learning along with them.

See while I teach them, they also teach me. They teach me to grow in patience, kindness, and love. They teach me to look at the world through the eyes of the child and see the good. They help me to be a better person. They make me want to be a better person.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

This is Me

So, I've been having issues with my computer...hence less blogs..i'm going to attempt to bribe a friend of mine to look at...because it's driving me nuts!
So, how am I doing? Honestly, I feel better than I have in a long time...I'm ready to stand up for myself and be assertive. No more door mat for people to stomp on and do what they will. I am so much better than that.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Don’t ask me why, but I’m not having a good night. I had wonderful day, but now I’m alone and it’s like blah. I started thinking today that it’s been nearly 18 years since my grandfather died. That’s an awfully long time. My grandfather was really the closest thing I had to a father. There were a few times that we lived with my grandparents, but my grandfather looked after me a lot even when we didn’t live with them. I was 11 when he died, and though the pain of losing him isn’t as painful, I don’t think that there’s a day that goes by when I don’t think of him.

My grandfather was this big man full of life. When he walked into a room, you could feel his presence. He loved his family, and he loved me. I was spoiled, and I was his favorite. I know that there was nothing that he wouldn’t have done for me. He was the only man in my life that I trusted, and to this day, well, it’s still that way.

I wish I could go and wrap my arms around him and tell him that I love him once more. I wish I could feel his hand in mine once more. I wish he was here to make everything okay because right now, my life is a bit out of sorts. But mostly, I just wish I could hear his voice, whether it was ordering me to make coffee or calling me by his special nickname for me, Julie Maginty.

I may have had him for only 11 years, but what an 11 years it was. I love you Papa.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Student Led Conferences

So tonight was the first half of parent teacher interviews, or student-led conferences as we call them now. I wouldn’t say that I get nervous from them, but I do enjoy when they are over. You never know how people will react, good or bad. I remember years ago, a student got an awesome mark, and the mother started bawling (seriously).

So overall, great night. I had 13 parents come and all showed up. I am a person who does try to emphasize the positive with students, but at the same time, I always need to make suggestions. It is part of my job, after all.

I am always so drained afterwards. My feet are sore and my mind is exhausted. I don’t want to do anything with any real meaning. It starts again tomorrow, but only until 1, and then we’re allowed to leave. To have a Friday afternoon off….yes!!!! It’s a big treat. And again, I’m not planning anything with meaning. I will nothing if that’s what I want!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Hurt = Anger

Last week, a close friend of mine who has become like a father figure to me, made a statement that really made me think. He said that hurt is just like anger. I’ve kept coming back to that over the last week or so. I am a person who can carry hurt easily, and I will admit, there are a couple people who have hurt me quite a bit. I should clarify that it’s not the opposite sex, for all of you out there.

I struggle in whether I should say something. Do I make it worse in the long run though? Is it a battle worth pursuing? How do I let go of the hurt the quickest way possible so that I’m not hurting myself in the long run? I recognize that the only person being hurt is me. I need to work on not taking things personally…with both of these people, I recognize that something is coming from within them to make them act the way they are acting (whether intentionally good or bad). Realistically, I know I just need to let go…

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Just wanted to post the finished project....I think it turned out great!!!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Soothing the Soul

(A work in prgress)

Stress-it may only be a five letter word, but it sure does a lot to you. Sometimes I wish for the simpler way of life, where things aren’t as rushed or pushed. I think I know myself well enough to know how to handle the stress, but sometimes, it can still get to me.

Luckily today, I got to come home and work on my stained glass. If you don’t know, I am a stained glass artist, and it is something that truly brings me joy. I love creating, and stained glass allows you to be very creative and unique. I’m currently working on a commission. The patron? An old friend that I used to work with that loved my Inukshuk series.

See, there is a beautiful rhythm in stained glass, and I don’t mean physical. It can take whatever is bothering you and soothe it and comfort it, and wear it down until you’re filled with a lot more peace. I’ve always said that there is no better way to relieve stress than breaking glass, and it’s true. What it does for me is soothes my soul, as corny as that may sound. And right now? I need comfort, I need to be soothed. And in the process, I get to create. I get to be me.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Honest Reflections

Tonight I saw a falling star. I’ve never seen one before. It was absolutely beautiful-like a burst of fire in the black sky amidst the backdrop of a full moon. I made a wish, a very simple one, but I did make a wish.

I guess I’m struggling. One of my best friend’s was in town at her family’s house. I was able to go over and see everybody-her and her husband, her parents, her brother and wife, and her friend and child. She doesn’t know this, but it takes all my strength to go over and visit. See, it’s not that I don’t love these people and want to be with these people, but being with these people remind me of what I don’t have.

Ever since I was a teenager, her family stepped in and made sure that I had somewhere to go to on holidays and such. They are wonderful people; generous, kind, and prime examples of God’s grace. But we grow older and we become more independent, and people get married and such. And that’s the hard part. Going over reminds me of what I don’t have and as much joy as I gain, I also come away with sadness in my heart.

I often feel so alone-what family I have isn’t exactly close at times and quite fragmented. And, as satisfied sometimes that I am with being single, it’s also very lonely, and more so now than ever. I feel like I’m against the world some days, and lately it’s me trying to figure out where the heck I fit in. I truly don’t think I do, and I don’t think I’m meant to. In many ways, it’s a lot more fun not belonging, but it’s a lonely path.

I’ve had a super amount of change in the last year, and for the most part, it’s been in the positive direction. But change takes its toll, and can weaken the body. I came home tonight in a mixture of emotions. I hated even having a smidgen of sadness in me. I wrote in my journal, and still feeling out of sorts, I smudged and prayed.

I’m doing okay, despite crying a bucket load of tears while writing this. My chin is wet, and I even have tear stains on my tank top. Right now, I need to figure out where my place is. I was sure of myself at Sandy Bay last year-and honestly, I feel like I’ve been picked up and moved to another world this year. It’s not bad, but it’s change, and change isn’t my forte. I’m struggling, but I’m okay. I am a survivor-I’ve always been. It’s continued self reflection, journal writing, and a lot of praying. I smudge at least once a day (providing I can), and it brings me comfort. It reminds me that there is something greater at work, and that everything has purpose.