I believe in miracles.
I try to change the world every day.
I love my husband, my friends, and my family.
I plan my next great adventure constantly.
I think most occasions call for a dress.
I write what I know and believe.
Another week down… It’s unnerving how quickly we’re spiraling into March. I’ve been working on figuring out what my intention is for March, and I definitely know what it needs to be… I just need to find a way to make it measurable/possible for me.
Yesterday was the Commit Scorecard event. Typically, this is one of my favorite events of the year. It brings Dallas together to talk about what’s been going on in Dallas education, highlights the work of the partnership, and generally inspires me to keep fighting. There’s usually a strong sense of urgency. This year was different. Instead of feeling uplifted and ready to go, I left feeling worried about the lack of urgency. Maybe it’s just me projecting my feelings on to the event… but I missed the inspiration of year’s past. Todd and John B. King gave impressionable speeches, and I did appreciate what they had to say. But, make no mistake, our neighbor’s house is on fire. Don’t let the small gains shown lure you into complacency. There’s still an educational divide in Dallas… and there’s still a lot of work to do.
“We do need to do more faster.” – John B. King, former Secretary of Education under President Barack Obama
If you want to know about some of that work, let’s start with the fact that since President’s Day at least two of my schools haven’t had internet. TWO WEEKS. IN 2017. And, there seems to be no sense of urgency to fix that… The bigger problem? A huge local scholarship program has a deadline this week. I had asked the district to reach out to them to extend it. They did, once… but when we still didn’t have internet… I asked a second time. They refused. Suggested that a kid could reach out. Because ONE kid is going to change someone’s mind when you could be the one calling on behalf of 8,000 students? I just threw up my hands yesterday afternoon and cried in my office. Sometimes I can’t believe these humans and I are of the same species. After crying, I got. mad. af. And then I got to work. Because that’s what I do.
Moving on to the frivolous
I’m in desperate need of a new purse. I don’t think I’ve bought a new one since 2013. I’m not a big purse kind of girl… but I like to have a place for my business cards, receipts, an inside pocket to put things in, and a bag that I can completely close. I like classic styles (like this) and colors that pop throughout the year. Who has a bag and wallet they love?
I went to YBarre twice this week… and after the first day, I turned into Hurricane Sara. Nothing was safe. I was a woman on a mission. The second day wasn’t quite as productive, but I think I stayed up too late the night before. Either way, I need to find a way to make this a priority. It’s good for my soul.
I’m so eager to start planning our Italian adventure, but I’ve just been slammed with work for the last two weeks. I’m also trying to figure out where I want to do our pictures for this year… I just love our mini sessions… but I guess that requires me to know where we going. First world problems for sure. Anyone follow any amazing Italian lifestyle photographers that I need to know about?
“Just be happy.” My brain screams this at me on regular basis. Last week, I felt like it was on repeat as I struggled to manage my stress. I feel like I harped on this idea a lot this month… but as I said at the beginning of the year, my focus is to practice deliberate intention for 2017. This month, I talked about how I wanted to find joy. Focus on the little moments that make everything worth it. To find some solace and optimism among the chaos.
To just be happy.
My work is very stressful. At least once a day something hits my radar that could become a huge thing if I don’t deal with it. Usually it’s more than once. Often I feel like I’m herding kittens and I’m tired when I get home. Side note: Cara wrote a great post on 6 Ways to De-Stress from your Work Day earlier this week. But, at the end of the day – there are a lot of things to just be happy about. Don’t believe me? Try this exercise in gratitude each day.
Do you have friends that love you so much that they send you notes, agree to travel across the country to celebrate life events with you, or reach out to remind you that they appreciate you? Just be happy that you do.
Are your parents/grandparents still here? Still supporting you (emotionally, financially, spiritually) despite the differences you’ve had in the past? Providing childcare? Doing things to make your life a little bit easier? Just be happy that they are still here.
Do you have coworkers that make you laugh? Inspire you? Get frustrated with you and then remind you to get back to work? Maybe you’ve found a mentor at work? Or outside of work? Maybe you’ve found your own #girlboss #goals? Just be happy that don’t have to figure everything out alone.
Are you in a mutually beneficial and supportive relationship? Maybe you’ve found your soulmate. Maybe you’ve found someone you like wasting time with. Maybe you’ve found someone to encourage you to follow your dreams. Just be happy that you have someone to share life with.
Do you have a roof over your head, food in your belly, clean water to drink, and aren’t worried what’s going to happen tomorrow with either of those things? Be happy for that blessing.
Can you travel freely within the borders of the United States without being stopped for fear of persecution? Can you travel freely beyond the borders of the U.S. without thinking twice about your paperwork? Did you just receive these benefits by the privilege of being born within the confines of this nation? Recognize this as a privilege that you didn’t earn, but rather one that you were freely given.
Do you wake up each day without feeling a sense of fear or insecurity at whether or not you will persecuted for your beliefs, ideals, your skin color, your religion, or some other key part of your being? Just be happy and acknowledge the great privilege that exists in that existence.
Maybe you see this as a gross oversimplification of your existence, but there are so many things for us to be happy and grateful for. There are so many things that we fail to appreciate – and I suppose – now that I look at how things are going – that we absolutely take for granted. Life isn’t perfect, but for many of us, we need to just be happy. To give the good things some brain space.
I spent the entire week wondering what day it was… This one felt like a doozy. That being said, here’s a few things that I’m absolutely loving this week.
Steph’s post:It’s not about being political, it’s about being human. I feel like a broken record reminding people that we are talking about humans when I get hyped about social issues. Steph’s post was a sobering reminder of the realities for our marginalized friends and neighbors. Just think about the last time you had to defend or apologize for one of your core beliefs in a meaningful way. If you haven’t had to do that, recognize your privilege.
This Linkin Park song. Don’t judge me. It gave me life yesterday when I felt like the world was falling apart. I feel like that way a lot lately because… why is everything so heavy?
I took a big step with my NPO and brought in consultants to help us take the next steps to link up college and career. They spent the week with us doing site visits, talking to students, teachers, principals, and staff members. As crazy as everything has been lately, I feel wildly optimistic (in some ways) about the future. Maybe it’s unfounded, but I want to believe in something right now.
I booked the first connecting leg of our Italian adventure. We’re officially flying into Pisa! Cinque Terre, Tuscany… the possibilities are endless from here!
I am headed to Bloomington, Indiana for a QUICK trip to IU on Sunday! Anyone been there or have any suggestions of things I shouldn’t miss? I don’t know how much time I will have, but I love collect information. Hope everyone has a fantastic weekend… and that you give yourself time off…. something I am desperately needing to do.
Yesterday, I got asked if I wanted to be on a proposal for a national conference alongside someone I highly respect. I, of course, said yes… and then I started thinking about how far I’ve come in the past few years. For some reason, I don’t think I had taken the opportunity to give my last conference acceptance enough appropriate brain space. You see, two weeks ago, I had not one but two proposals accepted into the AP National Conference in Washington, DC this summer.
And yesterday, for the first time, I realized that if my dad was here, I probably could have convinced him to go to the conference. My dad was a much celebrated second career AP history teacher. He spent his summers grading AP exams. He loved to talk history. He loved to teach. He didn’t love (most) teachers though.
But, I like to think he would have gone to the AP conference to see me present.