Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Spin Cycle: Summer Plans

Don’t forget to enter the 200th post Hawaii goodie box giveaway.

Ahhh Summer…. What teacher does not love summer? Those other breaks are just a chance to catch up on grading and lesson plans. It’s really hard to feel like you are on vacation when you have over 150 names on your class rosters.

This song reminds me of my childhood summers. Play it while you read the post to set the mood if you like.


I remember the summer this song was popular, I was eleven and we had just moved from the San Fernando Valley to the Surf and Sand Mobile Home Park in Malibu. I went back to the Valley and stayed for a week at my best friend's house for her annual birthday party sleepover in July. We had the radio playing outside and were jumping over a rope into the ivy in her front yard. Landing on it like it was a pad for the high jump and laughing like crazy. This song was playing, we were young, and life was good. Afterwards, her mom broke all the girls up into groups and we went around her neighborhood on a scavenger hunt. Does anyone do that anymore in this day and time? It was so much fun; kind of sad that the world has changed and neighborhood kids don't come knocking at your door asking for eclectic items. Hyperventilating with excitement and glancing across the street to see if the other girls are racing back to the house with a completed scavenger list.

I’ve always loved summer. EVERYTHING ABOUT IT. Summer cook outs, camp outs and road trips. Beach days and hiking days. The smell of freshly cut grass, salty air, and balmy nights. Summer movies and summer sunsets. Picnics and plain just eating outside at every chance you get. The chance to reinvent oneself. To make lifestyle changes and have enough time to see if these changes become a part of a new you.

Top ten plans I have for this summer…

10. Sleep more and take more naps.

9. Exercise and mix it up so nothing feels routine. Walks to my favorite park and yoga on the pier some days, and long walks on the North Shore beaches other days. Body boarding and snorkeling. Hiking on the ridges. Living room work outs with my hip hop buddy, Shaun T.

8. Meditate. Or should I say try to meditate. I have never been able to conquer the jabbering and endless list making that goes on in my head, but when I was on chemo I was able to focus on mantras at least. Giving it another shot in the arm this summer. That time slot got preempted by blogging during the school year.

7. Write. Write. Write.

6. Blog. Blog. Blog.

5. Lesson plans. I could leave it off the list, but the truth is, teachers worth their salt work over the summer. Summers between school years where I switched teaching lines I worked a lot. Next year will be my third year in sophomore English, so I won’t have to work too much. There is a new unit I am planning as well as a project. I also have notes and reflections from last year that I need to go through and use to tweak the units that I will be repeating.

4. Help my mom. Details of which could be another post or ten.

3. Read. Read. Read. Tackle that stack of books on my nightstand. Read the books for the new unit I am planning for my students.

2. Home projects. I never get to all the great project ideas I have, usually because of budget constraints, but sometimes just because of all the other things on the list. This summer my big idea is to plant a vegetable garden. We’ll see how that goes.

1. “Staycation” days. This is what we call it over here when you have no money to travel so you make it a point to enjoy some days on the island as if you were a tourist. At least once a week I hope to have a great day doing something fabulous. The particulars will depend on petty cash availability and the company I’m keeping on said day.

I know where I’ll be at the end of summer, long after I’ve gone back to work. My girlfriends annual Laborless Labor Day.
For more spins on summer plans, head on over to Sprite's Keeper.

33 comments:

Sprite's Keeper said...

Oh, that sounds absolutely lovely! I remember those days in my own neighborhood as well, the freedom and the safety we felt when we would knock on doors looking for "lost" items on our list. Most of the time, the neighbors were in on it and you would just catch the right house by luck and get the item without too much hassle. Until we got to the next door house. We needed oranges from her tree, and she refused to let any of the kids have any so we had to sneak into her backyard and grab some anyway.
I wouldn't think of letting my kid knock on anyone's door these days unless I know them and I'm there with her.
You're linked and I hope you hit everything on your list!

Sniffles and Smiles said...

Have a wonderful, wonderful summer!!!! Teachers deserve their breaks!!!!! Enjoy your recharge!!! It sounds absolutely wonderful!!! Enjoyed the music, too!!! ~Janine XO

Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

Hey Jen! I love that our host was the first one here.

Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

Thanks S and S ; -) We were both commenting at the same time. Very cool.

only a movie said...

Fabulous list. Can't wait to be able to focus on my list.

Or go to some exotic Pacific island for vacation.

xxxooo

E

Joanie M said...

Loved your spin, Pseudo!

Scavenger hunts were always so fun!

I enjoyed your list so much, I swiped the idea and did one of my own (but I did give you linky credit for it)

Enjoy your summer!

♥ Braja said...

Oh right and where's the "Have a margarita with/for my friend Braja"????

:)

Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

Braja, I've got the margarita if you've got the plane ticket...

Moive, if you visit an island it better be this one ; -)

mo.stoneskin said...

I love the idea of "read read read". I used to do that, years ago, then I started work, then I got married, then we had a baby and now, crumbs, I'm lucky if I make it through a book a month. Sadness.

lisa said...

Sounds heavenly.

Sandi said...

I LOVE THIS SONG! It takes me WAY back!

Michel said...

somehow, the staycation in Sudan does not sound as fun as is Hawaii, I am not sure why...

Gaston Studio said...

I used to love scavenger hunts, so exciting to see who can come back the quickest with all the items! You're right though, that it might be hard to do these days which is a real crying shame!

Love your summer list too and hope you get mucho relaxation. You certainly deserve some peace and quiet!

Beth said...

I love your list - especially the sleep more and read, read, read parts.

Enjoy your break! You richly deserve this down time.

And just for fun, I think I'll drink a beer in honor of you tonight!

Joanna Jenkins said...

Put your feet up and REST! After a whole school year you deserve it!!!! Happy summer.

Cairo Typ0 said...

Have a wonderful summer. From everything i've read here, you deserve it. :)

anymommy said...

A perfect summer, in my mind. I hope you post that you've finished that book draft in the next few months!

Dingo said...

I love In the Summertime. Every year we would play it on the first day of summer. I'd forgotten about it until now.

Your summer list sounds great. I will be doing some of those things myself, such as going to your girlfriends Laborless Labor Day party. Oh, wait. Okay maybe I won't be doing that one.

Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

Ah. First staycation day. Hubs, BC and I went to the beach you can see in the photo, beyond the lanai. It was a beautiful day, took a long walk, and collected a whole bunch of shells.

Then I-shuffle and a beach read.

Great start.

Deb said...

oh the scavenger hunt... i remember it well! that might be a fun thing to start again with my little one and his buddies this summer.

your to do list sounds awesome. if you do manage to get around to most of it, you will be able to check off the summer as a success!

bernthis said...

summer used to be my favorite. I guess a sign of "aging" is a really hate the heat now. When I was younger summers were my respite from the horrible school years that is for sure

Captain Dumbass said...

Read read read, write write write. I wish I could, but the puppy-like mewing from attention craving children don't allow much of that.

What the hell am I going to do with the kids everyday?

Jack said...

Thanks for the tune, I love that song and the sideburns those fellows sported :)

Great list, especially #1. That's what were are doing this summer - having a staycation.

I'm looking forward to following you on your summer break.

Kingsmom said...

Your list sounds fantastic. The hubby and I really want to move to Hawaii. Lucky you.

smiles4u said...

I have thought about you over this past month...wondering how the end of your school year was and what your doing with your summer. This post answers all of that...your list sounds most wonderful and I hope you get to do them. I hope you have had time to catch your breathe and just be good to yourself. I have sure missed you! Hugs and love, Lori

Fragrant Liar said...

I'm glad you get a break from kids for a bit so you can regroup and rejuvenate yourself inside and out. I love that you're a fellow writer. Writing a novel?

Midlife Jobhunter said...

I hope you get accomplish everything on that list - especially the reading, writing, and meditating. I, too, find the latter difficult. My mind goes here, there, everywhere. But the few times it truly worked, incredible. Enjoy your days - and nights.

Rachel said...

Wow, your description of summer just knocked me back to Ohio summers 10 years ago. I flash backed a bit for my own spin, but I didn't feel like I was there. Great spin!

Mrsbear said...

Sounds like you've got a busy summer planned. With all the kids home this past week, I haven't had time to go to the bathroom by myself, much less blog or write or shower. The scavenger hunt sounds like such a fun idea, but I would be reluctant to let my kids wander the neighborhood knocking on stranger's houses. It's kind of sad how much the world has changed.

Oz Girl said...

Enjoy your summer and the chance it offers you to recharge! #9 and #1 sound like real winners. :)

And I too miss the summers of my youth, when kids in the neighborhood played all day straight into the dusk of the evening. We lived on a dead-end street, so kick the can was always fun as it started getting dark!

Laura said...

The only scavenger hunts I've heard of lately are at the mall which is just wrong.

I guess I'm becoming a salty teacher because I am so excited to be taking a monthlong class and planning to teach senior English.

Enjoy meditating on the staycation and the beach walks. One of the best things of teaching is the summers off because you get to get into your own rhythm and not just get a breather from the routine. Enjoy it all.

Smart Mouth Broad said...

Your summer sounds fabulous. I can't wait to hear you tell about it as it goes. I love your summer memories, reminds me of my summers long ago too. D2 had scavenger hunts for her birthday parties. Pretty funny because we live in somewhat of a rural community with large yards so they had to walk miles. (well, maybe not miles but a lot)

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