nerdlutiont555I’ve been very addicted to Twitter lately — it’s almost all I do except read very important books!! ūüėČ ¬†The other day, I creeped into a conversation where some important people wanted to re-commit to personal goals. There’s a hashtag, round of blog posts, and a picture to make this all “official”! Here is one blog I read that explains #Nerdlution better than I ever could: Sharpread

I’m making a commitment that for the next 50 days, I’ll do a few things I’ve been neglecting. Here’s the short list:

1…blog each day. It can be here or maybe in my daybook, but writing is a must!

2… SOME sort of exercise. The best way to do this is to follow that blasted Fast Metabolism book!! Just do it, please!

3…have Game Night with Lily once a week. Wednesdays sound good (and with Jake when he’s home).


That’s probably all the resolutions I need to make. Hell, I’m already behind on the first day’s…it’s after midnight. Maybe Dec 1 will be the start date…now if I can just do the math to see when the 50 days are up! haha…

Good news is I’ve read 2 1/2 books this week: One Night That Changed Everything; a skeery book from the WL library (that I can’t remember the name of, nor can I find it!); and half finished with The Sea of Tranquility, a creepy book that Donna told me to read.

I also started another website to house my teaching “stuff” — I’m being horrible by keeping resources in a million other places, so today, I tried to put websites and ideas and documents in one spot. We’ll see how long that lasts! For now, though, I have 4 pages…but the Home page is my favorite. I’m really struggling with staying with teaching, so I added a cute WeeMe avatar (where I’m holding my old Blackberryand a Starbucks coffee),3 videos that inspire me, a poem, a quote by Ghandi (for when I’ve feeling really bad) and, a Spotify

Avatar Me2playlist of 13 songs that should definitely inspire me (or, at least, define how I feel about teaching — when I love it, not now when I’m pissed).

¬† ¬† I know…cute, huh??

That about does it for today’s episode!


sols_6We’re having visitors this week at school. Every five years in NC, teams of educators evaluate schools to make sure they are…educating people, I guess. Anyway, we (my faculty) have to dress-it-up while the team is here. Everything from¬†de-cluttering¬†our classrooms, hanging up student work, and cleaning up the roach families, to not sending the unrulies to the office! My administration has gone somewhat crazy. They are even making us wear our staff ID badges –something I haven’t had to do in six years!

It’s the badge that has me in a funk today, for life is a lot different this year than last. Last year, my hair had just started falling out — chemo treatments, the ones I thought I was going to get out of, were in full swing. I couldn’t see through that rough time to the part where cancer wasn’t in the forefront of my mind. I think I need a new badge, though. The one I have now shows a person I don’t recognize: long hair, easy smile, confident demeanor. My new badge should reflect the new (not particularly improved) me: crinkle-cut-fries hair, second-glance-in-the-rearview-mirror brows, too-much-belly-below-not-enough boobs.

I read somewhere the other day a person who wrote, “I will always have had cancer.” It’s my new normal — the one where I just don’t feel quite like the ¬†me I used to be. It’s very hard to put into words — and as I’m writing these now, I can see the holes in my thinking and how I’m not able to put the words in the right order. Even a year later, the badge I wear doesn’t fit.

sols_6My students are reading the infamous NY Times¬†restaurant¬†review¬†of Guy Frieri’s new place. The best part? The dude reviews the¬†restaurant¬†using only questions — and TONS of hyperbolic phrases!! I’m having my students review a product using similar techniques. So, I thought I’d try it out today as practice for my lesson with classes on Thursday.


Do NOT Check With Your Physician First

Weight-loss gurus, do you talk to each other? Do you ever laugh at how your words impact the fatties in your community? Do you imagine them getting their only exercise running around from store to store to buy the latest “new thing” you’ve endorsed? Is there a back room somewhere that you gather in? When you’re there, do you generate a list of ways to confuse the masses? Seriously, how many times a week should we eat bread? Or drink red wine? Oh, now I can’t have bananas? Really…you’re going to change your minds again?

Do you realize how expensive eating healthy is? Or how much it costs to join a decent gym? And, if a client is in need of some one-on-one assistance, can the price please be higher than a week at Walt Disney World? How many times a week should we exercise now? Can it be only twenty minutes? NO? How about thirty? You don’t care now, as long as we do something? Are you kidding me?

When was the last time you actually ate what you suggested in you newest book? Did it taste like the paste you ate in first grade? Or the crunchy, bug-filled dirt you licked on a double-dog-dare when you were ten? Are you trying to get back at your mother for making you sit at the table until you cleaned your plate? How else should we interpret the tasteless stew of slimy salmon that you insist will raise our metabolisms?

Is anyone else confused?


Here’s what I’ve learned from this ten minute exercise: Writing only questions is HARD!! I’m not sure I have a clear structure either. And I definitely need a second draft because my questions lack the hyperbole that I so love in the Times’ piece. I can see that I did just a smidge when talking about paste and dirt, though. This is good for my students to know because they think I can get it right the first time (even though I tell them daily that I don’t).

I think this is why writing “beside them,” as Penny Kittle would say, is so important. And I’m hearing Katie Wood Ray tell me to use this piece — just this little bit– to create the writing lessons that my students need to know:

  • Writers question everything
  • But sometimes the questions don’t come easy
  • Writers draft and reread and revise and reread and draft some more
  • Writers look to their mentors and model things they like or want to try
  • Writers use different techniques to show disapproval (important in this piece because the reviewer REALLY didn’t like that¬†restaurant

I’m sure I can find some other mini-lessons from this piece, but these get me thinking. Anyone have other ideas?


The movie producer/writer, Nora Ephron, died last week. It was all over the news and Twitter, and everyone it seemed had good things to say about her. She did do several movies I liked: Silkwood, When Harry Met Sally, and whatever that Tom Hanks-Meg Ryan movie was where they meet at the Empire State Building.

Anyway, one tweet I read took me to a website that reprinted a list that Ephron had ended one of her books with (I Remember Nothing). Here is the link to the site and her writing: Nora Ephron’s Lists. I don’t know the context of the lists because I haven’t read the book, but I immediately felt I had a topic for my own set of lists: my journey dealing with breast cancer and having a genetic component attached to that diagnosis. Maybe my lists will¬†help¬†me put some things behind me, so I can move on to the wellness part of my life.

Things I Won’t Miss

Being bald


Sympathetic stares from people who don’t know me

The emergency room

Locking the bathroom door

The long drive to Winston Salem


Being out of work

Feeling helpless in the face of the unknown

People who tell me how great my hair cut/color is — IT’S A WIG!!


Cold ears

Scars: inside and out

Things I Will Miss

The doctors and nurses for being gentle and concerned with my healthcare

Time alone with Kevin on a regular basis (even though it was stressful)

Being normal — not a mutation

Cuddling with LilyBelle like before I lost my breasts

Feeling like a girl (woman)


Napping whenever the mood strikes me

Threatening to show Jake and LilyBelle my baldness if they didn’t stop arguing/aggravating¬†each other

My sister being at my beck and call


Law & Order SVU marathons all day Tuesdays

All-day read-athons

Coconut cake on chemo day

I have to say that writing the second list was harder — I had to dig deep to find some value to this experience that is part of who I am now. It’s difficult to accept changes, especially one like this. I’m grateful, though, for what I found.

What sort of topic would you use to write you’re own lists?