Sunday, August 13, 2017

13 days left. I think I'm sad!

I have finally managed to turn off the TV.  Briefly I considered it a few hours ago when I finished a movie I started yesterday on Amazon Prime (The Dressmaker, it's really good), but I felt too sad so I went to the reliable standby, Law & Order SVU on Ion. Aside from USA's A Christmas Story marathon every December or a Gilmore Girls Netflix binge, where else can a girl get completely reliable, predictable, and most happy-ending television in which she can avoid her feelings for hours on end?

All day long I have felt restless, irritable and generally bi&%$y. Maybe it's the lack of sleep lately, or that I forgot didn't meditate this morning, or that I want my house to be clean for people coming over tomorrow or that I still have lost no weight even though I must have burned enough mental energy obsessing about it to fit into those pants that used to be baggy on me.

I kept driving through the day, cursing this and that, stumbling here and there, with a layer of general disagreement with the world and myself. Lately I find myself generally always wanting to get home, but when I get there I often find myself mindlessly clicking through the Amazon Prime options one more time. Before I know it, 3 hours have passed with my laptop on my legs, two or three words typed, and 15 episodes of something that I have seen before at least 4 times have gone by.

Tonight a friend texted and told me she is sad I am leaving. And I realized that sadness is underneath my disgruntled and sometimes bitchy attitude today.

I am sad that today is my last Friday night alone in my house; tomorrow is the last long run with my running girls; I'm sad to leave my house, especially after all the love I put into it this year. I'm sad to leave my friends and I am scared about making new friends. I'm sad to leave my parents and family on a different continent.

I know I very well may come back to Boise, but it's possible I won't. Either way, my life is changing BIG TIME and there is sadness that comes along with the excitement of it. On one of the episodes of L & O, SVU tonight, one of the characters said, "If he doesn't deal with it, he can't move on." So I will try to feel the sadness, and maybe only watch 2 episodes tomorrow.

And I'll try not to be a b*#ch.

Monday, August 7, 2017

When everything just falls into place... #InternationalTeaching #intheflow


I'm ticketed!!!

And look at the routing on my ticket. Before you look, though, let me just say that I did NOT ask for this...

AND...there is an almost 9 hour layover in Dallas! Most of my family lives in Dallas, so I will not only get to spend the afternoon with them, but also get to be sent off to the other side of the world by family.

This is not the only thing that has fallen into place. Some of the other things...

  • A friend recommended a super great property manager that I feel totally good about
  • I don't fly out until August 24th, and so get to be here in Idaho for the solar eclipse!! (No solar eclipse in the UAE)
  • Another friend's husband just happens to be newly working for a company that packs pianos and precious items for moving and storage. I found this out just about two weeks ago, when my piano had just moved to the top of my "to do" list.
  • Said piano-packer-for-storage company owner hooked me up with packers to pack up my house. I realize that I could do this myself, but I would have to start right now, living in boxes and, most important to me, my sense of home would be disturbed weeks before I leave. I would rather pay people to pack my stuff professionally and quickly so that I can be in my home for as long as possible. My aunt taught me a long time ago, if you can afford it and you want to, why not?
  • While I was waiting for said packers to contact me, I was concerned about which days they would come. I was told it would take one day to pack, one day to load the stuff into the Storage Cubbys. Piano-packer Man thought the packers would want to work on the weekends, meaning they would pack & load on Saturday and Sunday, leaving me in an empty house until Thursday morning. However, when the packers called, he was totally able to book me for Tuesday and Wednesday! Which also means that 
  • I don't have to stay in Boise during the total solar eclipse!! I can go camping like I was hoping to get to do before I leave.
  • I got to go to Roaring Springs with a couple of friends last month. I've never been there before and it just so happened that they were going on a Saturday and it was easy for me to tag along.
  • Old friends and old flames are reappearing. I have run into two ex-boyfriends and my ex-husband in the last few weeks, as well as a couple of girlfriends I haven't seen in years.
  • A few people kept telling me about a fellow teacher who lives near me that taught overseas recently. I ran into him in the neighborhood (actually I just walked up to him and asked him if he was the guy, and he was very nice about it) and he was willing to get together a few days later and share his information with me.
Albert Einstein said, "Coincidence is God's way of remaining anonymous," and I can't help interpreting these events as reassurance that I am making a good decision. I feel like I am "in the flow", and how delicious it is!

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

I got a date (but not that kind, Dad)! #totaleciplse2017 #internatiinalteaching

I have been waiting since the beginning of February for this....a date that I will be leaving the States and moving to Abu Dhabi!


Not only do I know the date, August 26th-ish, but that date is AFTER THE total solar eclipse on August 21st. This means I will get to see it from not only the US, which is the only place it will be able to be seen in its totality, but from Idaho, which is in the direct path of the eclipse!!!

Happy 4th of July! @CityofUPTX @HP_Texas #4thofJuly #Family

Happy 4th of July!!  

I am in Dallas visiting family, and my uncle and I today went to watch the 4th of July parade in the Park Cities in Dallas. This was no regular "community" parade. It was over an hour long and along with the regular fire trucks, police cars and motorcycles included 2 bands, floats, classic cars, horses and 2 stagecoaches.

The weather was incredible, too. There was a massive thunderstorm last night which seemed to cool things off this morning. It was so good, it felt like winter in Texas! The air was cool [for Texas in July] and there was a lovely breeze.

Finally, there was candy. Candy, candy everywhere, being thrown at us by enthusiastic teenagers. Who doesn't like free candy thrown at you from strangers?

I hope everyone had just as enjoyable a 4th of July! Here are some of the highlights of the parade.

Great seats in the shade

The Liberty bell + the 10 Commandments. Not sure what to make of this...
One of the riders is the sheriff (not the kid in the center)

A "real" float.
Classic fire truck
The extermination industry was well represented.
The Dallas Polo Club.
None of us were sure who these people were, but they looked good!

This was a flatbed full of "Elvis's", or "Elvi" according to the sign.
Basic patriotic float, completed with a backwards flag and a Statue of Liberty!

Sunday, July 2, 2017

My first #LongLayover in #Toronto

I had an 8 hour layover in Toronto today between Prague and Dallas. I have never had such a layover before--just long enough to go into the city but not long enough to stay the night. After a little investigating I discovered that you can take a 25 minute express train into the city center for $12. Then I stumbled upon a "Long Layover" ticket that is round trip within 8 hours.So after clearing customs, into town I went for an afternoon adventure. 
First I discovered it's Canada Day, and a special one: Canada is 150 today!

I headed straight for the CN Tower, which was a well-labelled and super easy walk from the Union Pacific train station. 

This is on the side of the Toronto Blue Jays building.

After about an hour, I made it to the elevator.
Spectacular views from up there...
 A storm blew in while I was at the top...


So I decided to have lunch to pass the time!

Standing on the glass floor...yikes
Ripley's Aquarium of Canada is right next door. It was really amazing! Unlike the CN Tower, I thought this admission price was well worth the visit, even with the massive crowds in there. I didn't take many pictures but there was a lot to see. 
My favorite was the jelly fish room!

There was no way to forget it was Canada Day today!

Friday, June 9, 2017

Woops! #missedflight #sleptthroughBOTHalarms #AmericanAir

I'm finally at the Boise airport, waiting to board my flight to Phoenix to go to Chicago to go to London.

I couldn't help laughing out loud when I read this sign on the way to my gate:

If only they knew how NOT simple it was to get to the Boise Airport today! I overslept this morning. The alarm was set for 4 a.m., and a back up alarm was set for 4:30 a.m. Both have 3 snoozes for 3 minutes each. I heard none of them. I woke up at 7:30 to bright sunshine and birds singing. A lovely scene, except that I was supposed to be disembarking in Seattle at that very moment! I've never done this before! What a horrible feeling!

When an American Airlines agent finally answered, I started crying. She was so kind and told me to calm down, this happens all the time. After about 45 minutes and lots of different tries, we got it sorted. After a brief time on hold, she told me they were going to waive the fees so that all it cost me was more miles than my original ticket. In the end, I left at 1:40 p.m. instead of 6:17 a.m.

All in all, it turned out great to go later. Here are some of the benefits, in no particular order:

1. I got to go on a run before I left.
2. A hole in my small roller bag became evident, so I switched my stuff to a larger suitcase.
3. I was pretty well rested by the time I got to the airport!
4. A friend I haven't seen in a long time took me to the airport.
5. I realized that if you are willing to pay enough, you don't have to be super stressed! [All it cost was more miles to leave today instead of waiting 6 days to go at the cheaper price. I didn't realize that I was so programmed to do things the hard way!]
6. Don't take yourself so seriously! It's only life, after all!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Let the packing begin....

...but not Abu Dhabi yet. First, Europe for a trip with my dad.

The packing has begun (a little earlier than usual, to be honest):

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Last day of school - Goodbye, Boise...Hello Abu Dhabi! #internationalteaching #travel

The last day of school! Hurrah, I made it!

But this was my classroom when I left on Friday...

slightly different than the way it looked for the last 2 years:

It's all in boxes in my living room now because I have accepted a job teaching math in Abu Dhabi next year!  Where? Abu Dhabi is in the United Arab Emirates, in the Middle East. I will be at an all girls school for Emirati students. 

I have known for a while but have been so anxious I was afraid to tell people. However, today I met with a couple that taught there for several years and all of my anxiety fell away. I am super excited and looking forward to my next big adventure!

Thursday, April 6, 2017

#Movienight @JUMPBoise with #OpenSeasonMovie #MountainHosts

There is a terrific new space in Boise called JUMP - Jack's [as in Simplot] Urban Meeting Place. According to their Twitter page, it is "A celebration of creativity and inspiration, a place for the community to participate in a kaleidoscope of ever-changing activities, events, and programs."

Seriously, there is a ton to do there. Here is the calendar page. There are classes, programs, a maker space, wifi throughout, community events and spectacular views of Boise.

Tonight was free movie night where four of us met to watch Open Season, a funny kid movie. Not only is it free, you can bring in food (which only one of us remembered to do). An added bonus was that the creator of Open Season, Steve Moore, lives in Boise and was there to answer questions and chat. What a super fun evening!

Oh, and did I mention that we all rode our bikes downtown? 
I love Boise.

Us with Steve Moore - see movie playing in the background in a gorgeous room on the 5th floor.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Spring break @BogusBasin #lovetoski

One of the best parts of being a teacher? Spring break!! Beautiful spring skiing at Bogus Basin last week. We are so lucky to live so close to such a magnificent place.

Monday, April 3, 2017

New ski bag!!! #BogusBasin #Avalon #lovetoski

My new ski bag arrive a few weeks ago and it is AWESOME!!!  Also, it's pink. It fits both boots, my helmet and all of my garb, all at the same time! I used it a few weeks ago on a trip to Salt Lake and it was spectacular. I've wanted one for a few years but never decided I was worth the time and energy it would take to find one I liked. Well, that old idea has been in the process of being excavated all year, and finally, the ski gear barrier has fallen.

I found a recommendation list here and only considered models that come in pink. You can use your own filter! 
It's awesome!

Super comfy backpack straps
Handy-dandy pocket on the top next to a killer handle.
Look at all that stuff!!

Sunday, April 2, 2017

#MAET Year 1 scrapbook FINISHED!!! #scrapbook #Ireland #Galway

I just put the finishing touches on my scrapbook from MAET -Year 1! (MAET stands for Master's of Arts in Educational Technology and I completed in 3 summers in Galway, Ireland.)

Yes, I'm a scrapbooker. Not the it-loos-so-good-you-could-put-that-in-a-frame kind; I'm more like the cram-as-much-on-one-page-as-possible kind. I won't lie, Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood had a big effect on me, although I started doing this a little before I read the book. My first scrapbook was of my honeymoon to Greece with my ex-husband. Ever since then I have more or less accounted for big events and trips with a scrapbook.

Here's the gist:

  1. I collect all sorts of things during my trip. I mean everything: receipts, tickets, napkins, posters, brochures, stickers, figurines, rain ponchos. You just never know what might come in handy later.
  2. When I get home Some number of months or years later, I pull out all the stuff I've collected. I go online and print out a selection of pictures from the trip. For example, for MAET Year 2, I printed out 383 pictures out of 700ish total taken. 
  3. I sort the pictures chronologically by event on a big table.
  4. I sort all the collected debris on top of the pictures.
  5. Assemble pages, event by event. This is the part where I really start to relive the trip. It's the best part (as long as it was a happy event!). Here is where I see what was actually important to me. Those things are included.
  6. This is the second best part: I throw out all the stuff that doesn't go into the book. This feels fantastic! Before I started making scrapbooks I just collected boxes full of little mementoes and piles of pictures that no one ever saw except me when I cleaned out. Now, the good stuff stays and gets displayed, and the other stuff gets to go, and I complete the process with a visible piece of me to share and an indescribable sense of satisfaction.

Friday, January 13, 2017


After 6 snow days, a beautiful day in Los Angeles to learn about using mobile devices in education.

I am meeting fantastic people, finding myself inspired to be better and try new things.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Gilmore Girls Binge! #GilmoreGirls #Netflix #lifelessonsfromStarsHollow

Through the blowing snow I drove, all so I could stay at my friend's house for 6 hours while we binge watched the new 4 episodes of Gilmore Girls.

It. Was. Awesome. I'll admit, it started slow. But it got better with each episode. I'm totally re-hooked back in. 
Photo from:
So wonderful, in fact, I just found myself watching clips of the show. Like when Jess tells Rory...well, you can watch:

Or the best sequence ever, when Lorelai makes everyone stay and hash out their issues. In fact, I think I've posted about this before, I like it so much.

I think I'm going to have to watch the entire series again!