what i learned this week #1

whatilearnedthisweekI’m hoping to turn this into a weekly post, sometime during the weekend.  Um, don’t mind that it’s Monday, and I forgot to finish editing before today.  Other than the title, I haven’t set any other boundaries on this post, so it may be 50 words, or it may be 900.  Still interested?  Read on.

  1. I should have bought a wax-based eyebrow pencil a long time ago.  It takes me from  15 to adult in about 12 seconds.  (Far off, that is.  Up close in the mirror, it’s quite obvious I’m past 30, cleverly disguised brown marks or not.)
  2. Deciding that your biggest professional moment to date is not all about you becomes a professional strength.shoes
  3. The 20 year-old stories you were told may not very well represent the person standing in front of you.  In fact, they’re more likely to be inaccurate than not.
  4. I love how my husband prioritizes.  Playing in a basketball tournament so he can hang out with people he would like to feel more included takes priority over a long-time dream of running a marathon, even though he’d trained as far as 16 miles this time.  Mr. Point Guard strained his calf muscle twice, ending his dream for this year, and yet he doesn’t regret it.
  5. I need a new toothbrush.  My toddler just walked into the living room with it in his mouth.  And that’s not the first time this week.  Maybe I really need a bathroom door handle that works instead.
  6. When you’re memorizing Jesus’ sermon on the mount, his claim that his “yoke is easy” a few chapters later stands out like an open patch of carpet on my kids’ bedroom floor.  You just want to stand still on it.  You spend a couple of months trying to remember his words intensifying the Law of the Israelites, making it further impossible to keep, and then he says, “For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”  And that reminded me…
  7. Jesus is all about grace.
  8. Scripture Typer is my favorite new tool for memorizing.
  9. Jay Bilas is my favorite Dookie, and I want to read his new book Toughness:  Developing True Strength On and Off the Court.
  10. Sixth graders still do not understand my sense of humor, but eighth graders and I are on the same plane.  Sorry, eighth graders.  That’s not good news for you.

more happy dance & how a tearjerker song made me grin

And today, purple paper made me do my happy dance.go purple paper, go purple paper–

I learned several years ago that having a signature paper color for important documents and handouts is a smooth move for a teacher.

  1. It sometimes never gets lost in bookbags.
  2. Parents are impressed that the local school system is rich enough to buy color paper. {Shhhh…. They need not know who purchases the pigmented parchment.}
  3. It turns the back aisle of an office supply store into a disco.  —go purple paper, go purple paper–

Lime green, teal, and now “Planetary Purple” from the Astrobrights line by Wausau Paper hath made me dance.  Thank you, trees.  Thank you, dye.

You know what else made me smile?  This conversation:

Me:  Gab, you wanna check my memory on these verses?

G:  Yeah!

Me:  “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.”

B:  Now do the one about outerspace treasure!!


G:  You mean…?

 “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Me:  (woah)

Thank you, Jesus for your toe-stomping words, and thank you, Lara Williams for your challenge to memorize those words.

And for my final trick, I will tell you how the saddest song I can think of at the moment also brought me joy this week.

My new (larger!!) roster of recruits students showed up yesterday morning.  They were cautious, not sure what they’d gotten themselves into.  After an hour, I felt I had them posed to jump on board.  Then one girl said, “Well, you should sing for us.”  So I preached a little more about how even I still get nervous doing this sometimes, and I promise I’ll never make you do something I won’t do myself.

Two, three… four song titles, and I’m not feeling even one of them.  Someone says, “Do you know Tank?” Um, no.  Shoot.

One of them mutters something about how I Can’t Make You Love Me is her jam.  (Non-teenager people:  That means she loves that song.)

WHAT?!  Does Tank sing that?  Kids, Bonnie Raitt is my hero.  Well, one of the many.  And yes, I know that song. It’s my jam, y’all. Done and done.

For the first few lines, one of the kids is kind of uncomfortable that I’m singing, and she’s being silly to cover it.  I decide not to give my don’t talk while others sing speech.  I start to realize how hard it is to sing over the air conditioners and get worried that I sound dumb.  What a professional I am. Then, before I get to the chorus, I hear two girls whisper to each other, “She can sing.”  “She sho’ can sang.”

SCORE!!!!!!  I think I hooked ’em.

Thank you, Bonnie Raitt and your ridiculously sad song.