One Day… and Counting

Just a place to record the life and times of me!

Room #1 – Day 2

Yesterday I began this journey towards living simply by taking the stacks of old jeans out of the top of the closet. The goal was to either use them or get rid of them. The result….

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I tore them all apart and cut 231 squares that will be repurposed to make some fun quilts. One for my room and one for the Murphy bed when I get it built.

Next up, this stack of wood….

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One Day and Counting the moments until I can start Room #2!!! (so excited)

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The goal to live simply – Room #1

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Some bonds are pretty strong…..

A couple of months ago I met a man that I had only heard stories about. Stories about the fact that he was a two time Olympic athlete, 8 time national champion, friend to some, nemesis to others. Upon meeting him, I was initially inclined to say “Nice to meet you, I have heard so much about you” but something held my tongue. I did say the “Nice to meet you” but refrained from the rest for reasons beyond my understanding. As I watched this man for the evening that we were “together” at a National Track and Field meet, I was deeply impressed by the idea that this man was part of something much larger that I had ever imagined.

This man’s name was Pat Porter. He ran at Adams State College at the same time that my husband did and the two of them, like so many of the other men I have met since marrying my hubby, are part of what is now called the Long Green Line. I do not profess to know the first thing about the bond that exists within this group of men, I am merely an outsider looking in… but one thing that I do know is that there is something very tangible that holds these men together… even after so many years have passed. When one of them laughs, they all do… when one is hurting, they all do. And when one of them leaves this earth…. they all suffer a pain I don’t think I will ever understand.

Pat Porter was killed in a plane crash last Thursday morning. I will never forget the look on my husband’s face when he read the text from a teammate telling him the news. He just looked at his phone and said “What?” Then he commenced to finding as many details as he could so that he could tell the next teammate the news. These men will forever be teammates… for life and in death. Except now the team is minus one part. A part that only recently had come back to line….

The interesting thing about the whole situation is that Pat spent the last 20+ years away from the bond of his team… until June of this year. He came to the national meet and began reconnecting with his “brothers”…. I watched as hatchets were buried…. after so much time had passed. Men were laughing and talking… building plans for the future. Only to have that future cut dramatically short.

It was my honor and privelege to watch that scenario unfold… that scenario of forgiveness and reconnection…  and I feel very fortunate that I was able to meet the man and spend the small amount of time in his world witnessing the things that I did.

Death is a very fickle thing…. you never know when it might knock on your door or the door of someone you care about. Take special care to forgive others, say I love you…. and never take life for granted.

It is my belief that the bond of the Long Green Line will transcend death and eventually all of these men will be sitting in some grandstand somewhere talking about the “good old days” and how they made it…. as a  team.

As always, One Day and Counting…..

Paula

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Quite the project… (if I do say so myself)

Have I ever mentioned that my husband and I are building a canoe. It all started two years ago when we went to a family reunion. During that visit, we took my brother’s canoes out for some fishing… it was a blast! Needless to say, Randy and I were completely hooked on the whole idea of canoeing which meant it didn’t take much arm-twisting for my brother to talk us into building one. We worked on it for about 2 weeks straight and got quite a bit done but for some reason life got in the way and the canoe project got put on the back burner.

A few weeks ago, I got a phone call informing me that a canoe trip to Bowron Lakes in British Columbia was happening next summer – and did we want to go? Did we want to go??? What kind of a question was that?? Of course we want to go…. One problem, we needed to finish our canoe. Since it was my brother who was heading up the trip it was pretty easy to talk him into working on the canoe so we could get it finished… Image

This is what the canoe looked like a couple of weeks ago… Today we have it off the frame and as I write this my hubby is down sanding the inside to get it ready for fiberglass and resin. I have loved working on the canoe each and every minute (the only reason I am not sanding at this moment is my asthma) I think that the reason I have enjoyed it so much is because it is something that my husband and I have done together (well, with a whole lotta help from my brother)  It is going to be one of the projects that we will be able to look back on and say “Wow…. we really did this!”

One Day… and Counting….. until the maiden voyage!! 🙂

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Ch-Ch-Changes!

Once again the goal is to update this blog a little more regularly than I have been…. who knew that this would be such a difficult task? At any rate, the last few months have been a time for change….

Big Change – After teaching 7th grade social studies for the past 6 years, I have opted to move into a library and be a teacher librarian. I got my master’s in library media science in 2009 so I guess it is time to put all that expensive education to good use.

Another Change – My 23 year old son moved to Idaho to attend college. I knew that day was coming but it was still difficult to have him move away. New parameters for our relationship had to be established and I had to come to grips with the fact that he truly is a grown man. In my mind, he is still 2 toddling around in his Osh Kosh overalls.

Another Change – My 16 year old daughter got her driving permit. Not a huge deal in and of itself but if you couple that with the fact that she went to Prom, got a boyfriend and all of a sudden grew up, then everything is compounded ten-fold. We have survived all of the above and I am coming to grips with the fact that despite what I think, she is no longer my “little” girl. In  my mind SHE is still 2 toddling around in HER Osh Kosh overalls.

More soon…. One day and counting!

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Contemplations

I have not been feeling very well the last couple of days so I have been spending a great deal of time hanging out on the computer looking at things to do, make, or otherwise spend my time on. I have also been contemplating on how  much I miss the days when I was able to sit in my craft room for 8 hours a day painting, sewing, or simply creating. I miss the serene feeling I have when I can sit and just be still with whatever it is I am working on. Watching snowmen and santas “come to life” when I paint their eyes… feeling the pull of the sewing machine as I feed the the fabric through… those are things that I know I took for granted when I was able to do it every day.

One of my goals for this upcoming year is to craft more. I need that outlet in my life… oh so very much! I am a much happier person when I can create….. unfortunately I have allowed life to get in the way… with a million things to do and little time left over….

One day and counting… until I feel better again.

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Life is too short…

I found out today that someone I have known for several years passed away last night. She was out shoveling the snow from her sidewalk and had a heart attack… one minute she was here and then the next she was gone… just like that. Although she and I were not “best friends” (in fact, she probably doesn’t even know who I am) this woman impacted me.

I used to sing with Sweet Adelines… one of the first memories I have from my singing days was of this woman singing with her quartet at a regional competition. I cannot remember the name of the song but I do remember the joy that exuded from every fiber of her being as she was up on that stage singing her heart out and entertaining the audience. People were definitely enjoying the performance and I remember laughing til I almost cried. There were many other experiences I shared with this woman throughout my tenure with this particular organization….. she was a talented director, voice coach, and all-around nice person…. I learned from her and I know that she will be missed… by so many whose lives she touched and by those who loved her most….I cannot even imagine losing a loved one at a time when most are celebrating.

My point in sharing this is to say that one never knows exactly how much time they have on this earth… take advantage of every second you have with the ones that you love most. Tell them how grateful you are for them every single day. Spend time with them and most important of all, tell them you love them!

As always… one day and counting…

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Decompressing….

It’s been a million years since I posted anything here…. I equate this to the fact that I have been uber busy. Sounds more like an excuse than anything else but the reality of the situation is… I am in perpetual motion from 5:30 in the morning until well after 10:00 at night each day.

It has been a most crazy time the last few days…. getting ready for winter break and winding down yet another quarter of school. Time sure is going by fast! Tonight I am fortunate to have some time to relax with no immediate deadlines which is a good feeling. Still preparing for the holidays but able to breathe a bit.

I made the cutest fleece blanket tonight… as simple as it was, it was comforting to work the fabric  and create the “final product.” It reminded me of how much I miss doing that kind of thing.  I have decided that I truly do need to slow down and start doing some things that I haven’t done in a very long time… crafting, sewing, baking, cooking in general… the things I used to make time for and things that helped me alleviate some of the stress in my life.

Found this fun fabric today and had to have it! Made the cutest blanket EVER!

Still running and hoping to achieve the goal of a marathon at some point in the future… but for now … Still One Day and Counting!

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Accomplishments

It’s been a while since I have posted on my blog… chalk it up to the end of another school year, the beginning of summer, being too busy… you pick. Regardless of how busy I claim to be, I did want to take a minute and reflect upon some of my accomplishments over the last few weeks… all too often I sell myself short and feel as if it is beyond the realm of humility to share my successes so this is a very new thing for me. With that in mind, I will keep it short…

Accomplishment #1 – I finished the entire National Board Certification for Teachers submission process on June 11 with an assessment. Have no idea how I did, but the sheer fact that I made it through that process is quite gratifying. I will know the results in November but until then, I can relish in the fact that I did what I set out to do.

Accomplishment #2 – I ran my first 5K race ever just yesterday. I was so nervous about the whole experience up until the point that the officiator said “Go” and then a whole different me showed up. I ran my race and did so at a pretty good pace…. one that I was so happy with. I am really excited to keep training and to continue to learn and develop as a runner. What on earth was I so afraid of??

So there you have it… two accomplishments in my recent life that have helped me grow so much as a person… as always… one day and counting.

Paula

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5 Years… hmmmm

So, tonight was my school district’s recognition for those who are retiring and those who have achieved certain milestones of service – 5, 10, 15, etc… I am not one to draw attention to myself and don’t really like to be in the “spotlight” so I opted out of attending the festivities. I am, however, amazed that I have been teaching for 5 years. As I look back over the last 5 years, I have been through an incredible amount of growth and change and I am truly grateful for where I am “at” in  my life. Even though I decided not to attend the recognition… I am grateful for the opportunities that my job afford me to grow each and every day. I work with some wonderful people and have been blessed to rub shoulders and learn so much from those I go through my days with. So to them I say…. Thank you!

I know that time is a funny thing and before I know it…. I will be celebrating another milestone… whatever that might be… until then, one day and counting.

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