Archive for ‘Personal’

December 6, 2013

Technology means “Magic.”

by stryson

I finally feel free to admit it… I always desperately wanted to introduce my computer classes with this Strong Bad Email:

I was pretty sure it wasn’t appropriate to do so, and that my kids would not understand most of the humor involved, but it continues to make me laugh, years later.

October 23, 2013

Endings and Beginnings

by stryson

What we call the beginning is often the end
And to make and end is to make a beginning.
The end is where we start from.

-T.S. Eliot, from “Little Gidding”

It’s been a long time, and so much has changed.

The last time I posted, I was enjoying a wave of freshness that could only be brought on by the middle of summer vacation, when the memories of the previous year have matured from “exasperating” to “endearing,” and when the commencement of a new year still felt to be a lifetime away. Since then, an entire year (plus some) has passed – a year that has been a gigantic roller-coaster.

The short version of the story is this: at the end of the 2012-13 school year, I chose not to renew my contract. To tell the long version of the story would be both long-winded and unprofessional, both of which I refuse to be in this space.

I have, however, started anew, working privately, tutoring and teaching music lessons. It occurred to me recently that this space is still very relevant to what I do – and now I actually have some time to keep up with it! (I also have a horde of funny quotes from 2012-13. I didn’t stop recording them just because I lacked the time to post.)

So, that’s where we stand. New beginnings, take two.

July 10, 2012

All it took was a little time away…

by stryson

… to remind me of how much I like doing this. By “this,” I mean both blogging and teaching. After a bit of a hiatus, I’m back to both. I’m not teaching summer school – I haven’t done that since 2009 – but I am tutoring, which is just enough for me during the summer.

It seems to be an annual occurrence for me to get incredibly burned out and irritable by the end of the school year. I’m certain that I can’t be special in this – does anyone have any good tips for keeping it cool through the end of the year? I hate the way it spills over into my personal life… I’ve been spending summer trying to get back in touch with people after my coping strategy became “hunker down and ignore what you can until it all goes away.” My husband put a very positive spin on this troublesome habit the other night, though, which made me feel better: “You want to give each person and each thing 100%, so then when you’re not able to, you get frustrated.” While this is a kind way of viewing the situation, I’d love to get to a more balanced place, where I don’t get thrown for a loop as easily.

Ah, well. Back on the horse, at any rate.

I was going to end this post with a picture of the artwork with which my kids covered the board on the last day, but the picture is on my computer at home. In its place, I’ll share the artwork they left on the day of “Expo,” which is like a spring back-to-school night. (Clicking the picture should show you the full-size version for a closer look.)


November 16, 2011


by stryson

My apologies for the dearth of posts lately. It’s been exactly one week since my husband and I closed on a new house! We’ve been working on this for six months now, since it was a short sale, and the seller’s bank was, to be diplomatic, not the most helpful group to work with. In any case, we’ve been quite busy, as you can expect.

Last night, I went straight to the house after school, and one of my good friends met me there. We worked on cleaning the upstairs bedrooms all afternoon, cleaning dust & grime off of the windows, walls, base boards, vents. It’s mind-boggling how much cleaning there can be to do in a completely empty room! My husband joined us after he got home from work, and we rounded out the evening with pizza, eaten on the floor of our empty sun porch, the room with the softest carpeting. I was excited when one of our neighbors saw us through the window, which I’d opened to let out some dust and let in some fresh air, and introduced herself from her driveway. I’m looking forward to living in a neighborhood where people actually socialize!

School continues on, alternately stressful and amusing. Expect more quote posts soon; I have a backlog piling up.

Now I’m off to prepare for a phone conference. We ended up cancelling our parent-teacher conferences because we missed so many days from the freak October snowstorm. However, some parents have requested phone conferences to make up for it. It should be pretty quick and easy, though.

Enjoy your rainy (at least here) day!