March 27

Things I Don’t Like

I don’t like traffic.
I don’t like rudeness.
I don’t like cheating.
I don’t like lies.
I don’t like mean.
I don’t like burnt popcorn.
I don’t like making silly mistakes.
I don’t like when someone I love is sad.
I don’t like feeling invisible.
I don’t like crowds.
I don’t like cinnamon.
I don’t like when the seam on my sock is turned around.
I don’t like constant negativity.
I don’t like fruit with dessert (except for strawberries).
I don’t like feeling sad…

This is certainly a different kind of post for me. It was inspired by a sixth-grade writer. Her post is here. I like the line I ended on because it reminded me of this quote I saw posted by the brilliant author, Martha Beck. The raw material for joy is sorrow…WOW!

March 23

A Letter to Spring Break

Dear Spring Break,

I’m so excited that you are arriving today. I’ve been waiting and waiting for you! Now that you’re here, I don’t even know what to do first. Here are some must do’s on my list: I want to go and see at least two movies! I want to read a couple of really good books! Spending time with my friends each day will be a goal too! Hopefully, the weather will be warm so I can get outside for long walks with Bella too. It all won’t be fun and games, though. I understand.

Grading must be completed along with a couple of other projects for school. I have to clean out my garage along with other house projects. These may not be fun, but I will feel good when it’s all finished.

Spring Break, I will make sure to spend time each day being productive, as well as having fun. Remind me that it’s ok to just be during this time. Remind me that each moment I spend is precious. Thank you for the rescue! It’s been a busy school year and a break will do me good.

Love you,

Ms. Haseltine
March 20

Lack of Snow Haiku

Glum. Where is the snow? 
Predictions…never correct.
And now? Discontent…

I was counting on it. The snow. I was so sure that it would be here this morning…so sure that I didn’t prepare my slice the day before. (Rookie mistake.) I was so sure that nothing could jinx it.

Don’t get me wrong…I love my job. I love my students…still I want the snow. We’ve been denied snow all year long!I think it’s coming later today…I hope. Oh snow, where are you?!?!

March 9

I’m Grateful Today

I’m grateful. Today I’m grateful. For what? Well, I’m glad you asked…

Grateful for (in no particular order)…

1. achieving goals I’ve set for myself

2. friends who love & support me

3. writing, writing, writing

4. being an auntie & a Godmother

5. my family

6. memories of those who are no longer here

7. laughter

8. creativity

9. my voice

10. strong, resilient, brilliant students

11. a school community where I feel valued

12. being a teacher

13. books

14. twinkle lights

15. pens

16. notebooks

17. learning new things

18. grace

19. Bella, my sweet dog

20. mail

21. Oreos

22. the lunch gang

And so much more. Sometimes, in the middle of a busy, messy, stressed life it’s important to reflect and be grateful. I’m grateful for this blog and all of my readers. 

March 7

Messiness, Mistakes & Grace

I’m a teacher. I encourage mistakes. I tell my students, “In this classroom, mistakes is when the learning takes place.” I encourage the messiness of learning and writing. We celebrate it. 
So here’s my question…why am I so hard on myself when I make a mistake? I made a mistake tonight. It’s a small one. Nothing huge. I forgot to do something. I’ll have time to get it done. No crisis. No harm was done. Yet, I can’t let it go. 
My mind is gnawing on it like a dog gnaws on a bone. I keep wondering how I forgot and chastising myself for being so careless. My self-talk right now is not pretty, yet I can’t make it quiet down.
Writing helps…a bit. As I write this I remind myself to look at this through another lens. What would I say to a friend if they made this mistake? I’d remark that it’s no big deal. I’d tell them that everyone makes mistakes and it’s fine. Finally, I’d remind them to be kind to themselves. Show themselves grace. GRACE. 
For some reason, it seems that grace is easier to show to others and is not easy to grant to ourselves. What will I learn from this? I will remember that I make mistakes like everyone and I will work to remember that my mistakes don’t define me, my response to the mistakes do. I will celebrate the messy and remember to have fun!
March 6

Cupcakes & Connections

An art teacher at our school won a radio trivia contest (94.7 Fresh in the DC area) and when they heard he was a teacher, they offered to treat the staff to cupcakes, Georgetown Cupcakes. That was exciting! Cupcakes?!?! Georgetown Cupcakes on a Monday…heavenly!

As I walked into the staff lunchroom, I realized that the people who brought the cupcakes are the people who are on the morning show on 94.7, The Tommy Show. I started talking to them about our amazing news show and the hard-working students who create it every day. Bragging. Yes, I was bragging about my middle schoolers!

Their faces lit up! They had so many questions. We chatted for awhile and then Tommy asked if I’d like to answer a couple of questions. He interviewed me right there…on the spot. I’m going to be on the radio show this morning. 

What a connection! My hope is that we can continue this connection and my students will benefit from it. It’s moments like these that make me grateful that I get to come to school and be their teacher. 

If you are local and reading this early enough, tune into The Tommy Show on 94.7 Fresh. I can’t wait to see where this takes us…the sky is the limit!

The student producer worked on this show until 9:30 last night. I’m so proud of him. Here’s today’s B-AM News for your viewing pleasure…


March 5

Coming to the Final Page

If you are new to reading my blog, you may not know about my passion for my notebooks. I’ve been writing in notebooks for more than thirty years and I have all of them. Currently, I’m writing in notebook number seventy-five. I started this notebook on January 1, 2018. It’s served me well these past few months. 

I name my notebooks. This name is my One Little Word for 2018, MOXIE. My 74th notebook was much smaller and the pages had lines. 

I’m usually against lines, but I loved the size of the notebook, so I tried it. When I finished and moved onto this next notebook, I hadn’t realized how constraining those lines and the small size had been for me.

I turned to a larger notebook with a spiral at the top. This was another unusual choice for me, but I needed it to follow the last notebook. In this notebook, What’s next?

I don’t know.

Starting a new notebook is both exciting and worrisome. I worry that I won’t pick just the right one. I am sad that my last notebook is almost full and it won’t accompany me everywhere. Instead, it will find a home in my bookcase of notebooks. It feels like a friend that’s moving away. 

I’m preparing. Thinking about which notebook will be next. Filling these last pages with words and doodles and love. Once I come to the final page, a new journey will begin.


March 4

Must See TV

The way we watch television has changed. It’s changed so much that it’s often hard to keep up with it. With the cost of cable skyrocketing, I decided to look into other options. I took a long time deciding what changes to make. To me, I had to have access local and cable news channels and of course a few of my favorite stations.

I canceled cable. Getting out from under that bill felt great! Now the task was to find the best replacement. I tried SlingTV first then I tried HuluTV. Both were fine,  but I found them too expensive for what I was getting. Right now I get my TV from Youtube. That’s right. Youtube has an app that carries TV stations and gives you access to DVR. It’s not that expensive either. 

What’s interesting to me about all of this is we don’t watch TV anymore as a nation. Twenty years ago, I remember watching Thursday night TV and then going to work the next day and discussing it. Friends, Will and Grace, ER. We couldn’t wait to talk about what happened or what would happen next! That’s all gone. It’s all different now. Now, we talk about the best series to binge but we still can’t talk about specifics until everyone has finished it. 

I’m not writing to lament the loss of the good old days, but I am writing to document how quickly things change. There’s no judgment on the change, just a comment that it’s happening so quickly. Do we stop and notice? Do we adjust our behaviors accordingly? I never thought TV viewing would look like this. It’s interesting. 

What do you think of our new television viewing habits?

March 1

Making the World a Better Place

The world can be a scary place. I’ve been thinking about what I can do to make the world a better place. How will I make things better?

I love the quote, “Let us remember: One book, one pen, one child, and one teacher can change the world.” Malala Yousafzai. As I pondered those words, an idea formed. Letters. Cards. Mail.

I started eleven days ago (that’s an important number). Eleven days ago I started writing a card and mailing it out…every single day. Quietly. I mailed cards to my mom and my sister. I mailed cards to a high school friend and a former roommate. I’m keeping a list.

As I go through the day, I find myself looking for potential recipients. It’s already changed me. As for the people who’ve received the mail, something has already happened…these people have contacted me saying thank you.

It seems that we all need some love. We need to be reminded that we aren’t alone. These notes are making a tiny difference in the world of those I love.  I believe in the ripple effect…Mother Teresa said, “I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.”

Love. It will change the world. It’s the only thing that ever has. Mail a card today. Jot a note on a sticky for someone. Change the world.

Happy Slicing Challenge! I’m here for my fifth year and I can’t wait to see what happens.

*Today is an important day for me. Eleven years ago my dad died. I didn’t plan on writing about this letter challenge that I created for myself and started ELEVEN days ago. A coincidence like this isn’t just a coincidence to me…it’s Dad sending me some love. Miss you and love you, Dad!*