Yes, it begins. In education we call this time-period eternal damnation. It is a combination of the daily springbreak shuffle and the beginning of testing readiness for the state tests which grant us our precious 301 monies. As an aside, this never should have been the teachers carrot to success =money. It begets deranged teachers and students who have figured out (long, long ago) that they can pass to the next scholastic year even not on their best days. Even with failure. We cannot control their mindset on that day. I have created cheers, given out gum and mints (now banned), stretch yoga breaks. Prep talks, adnauseum and hyping the importance of the test. It is my only scripted moment of the year. Blah, blah, blah, blah. Other infamous Livingston end of testing activities are bubble parties, classroom bracelets with positive mindsets (doing this one, this year). But even with the review preparation that I begin this week. I cannot begin to guess the outcome. So, my money, hangs in balance and I NEED the funds. To end my aside. Let’s think and use these monies correctly, for the teachers, end the hoops as I can guarantee I am jumping. Enough of that.
To describe an average day, to anyone who is not in the trenches, from the Superbowl onward, is possible. However, no one believes me. Even my husband says I embellish. Nope. All real. Twenty-three years of stories locked up in my head. I have thousands of them which do not make for cocktail party dribble, unless you find another teacher, and frankly by the weekend we don’t do outside parties. We are in hiding. My stories range from the sweet to the disturbing. Currently, my kids are in the disturbing stage. This will pass. I hope.
Prior to the Superbowl, I had weekend outings and a life outside of my classroom. It was a focus. I was succeeding. But no more. I am tired, mentally exhausted, drained, and waiting for my life to resume the last week of May. This week did me in. So, this weekend while in my state of lucid hibernation I made a pact with myself. Instead of the wait and hide weekend system I have been using, I am going to go into intensive training for the final semester of school. Which in my mind compares to any long distance sport. Here we go!
*Note* obviously not based in science but then neither has the last few years. Take ideas, use, modify, but most importantly get ready for Spring in the way that it suits you. For example my goal is one evening out a week. That’s it. However, you may be introducing much more into your life outside of school. Bravo. Here are my tips to simplifying life and building the strength I will need to not dive into my currently weekly hibernation. Here we go:
1. Unless you love cooking don’t meal prep. Frozen dinners were created for teachers. Use them.
2. Stock your room with flavored water, soda etc as if you are a camel. Instead of schelping. Order and deliver to your school. Simplicity is everything as we near the end.
3. Order everything. It saves you approximately four hours a week. There is no reason to go into a grocery store. Ever. My extra four hours saved will be used to hang out with the hubs who is often left out my long work hours during the week and on the weekend.
4. Go to Mexico and stock up on ZPacks. Truly. Take vitamins daily and drink Emergency powder every single day.
5. I cook simply and from a frozen state. I do air fried shrimp, chicken, fish, and simple low calorie Chinese mixes and thus always have lunch remaining, if frozen is just too chilly. Take away. Cook, keep it clean and make healthy choices but don’t stress yourself out. Keep. It. Simple.
6. Log your foods and steps. I use My FitnessPal and it keeps me away from my recent over indulging through the holidays and an injury.
7. If like me and you have a few Covid-19 pounds. Work to get eating healthy and find your daily movement pl. Every Damn Day. I am now a morning spinner staring down the barrel of 200 rides. Another post.
8. Leave before 4pm.
9. Leave school at school. I still take school home on the weekend but not M-F.
10. Laugh. Enjoy. Love your kids. Your renewed bounce in your step from carving out your additional time, eating healthier, and moving might just cause you to retire after your official date. Or not. No judgment.