What a week! This week began with a near-record low of 7 degrees and guess which night our heat went out? That was a night for the book, and maybe it would be an exciting level in my video game? We finally went back to school on Tuesday (on a delay, have you.) I had some serious first-day jitters about seeing my kiddos, but Lawd do I love my bunch this year! I don’t think I even realized how much I missed them until I saw their faces and talked to them.

It’s been nonstop this week. I’ve tried to make it to my 4:30 gym time, make dinner every night…I’ve failed more than succeeded, but we’re just not in the groove with our goals yet. I haven’t had a ton of time for reading, but here are a few things I savored:

6 Ways Parents and Teachers Can Teach Teens About Love  

I almost could just do an entire post on this topic, and maybe one day I will. I loved this article because it’s written by a middle school counselor and addresses the complexity of middle young adolescent romance. I think with my students, I have a gift for talking to them about their love life because I remember middle school life all too well. But, not everyone does, and not everyone works with middle schoolers on the daily. Good read if you’re stuck in dealing with this issue. (Also, please feel free to contact me with any questions about middle school kiddos. I know a lot of them and love all of them. Yes, all!)

From Date Nights to Cold Showers

I am kind of obsessed with habits lately. I know it’s due in great part to the whole “new year, new me” mentality, but I’ve also been reading Better Than Before: Mastering Habits of Our Everyday Lives by Gretchen Rubin. I am fascinated by the processes in creating habits. Conversely, I want to really learn why it is we don’t make time for things we love (for me, writing and music.)

Downsizing, Retirement, and Moving Back Home

Confession: this is my dad. I feel such a parallel in mentality with my parents in the last couple of years: we are all focusing on what really matters, and it ain’t stuff. I hate stuff. I just want time, and I want to make the most of that time. We are working so, so hard to be in the debt free life he talks about. Listen up, kids…this is how you get to where you want to be.


(Also, my dad is an amazing writer! Who knew? I’m so glad he’s writing!)

How Exercise Can Help Depression in Kids

I am willing to give this a try in the name of activity because, what could it hurt? Truthfully, I see a big change in Novella when we have long breaks with no activity. This time of year, especially this year, is hard when we have little opportunity to get outside. Plus, she’s always sick, so I need to keep her in even more. Whatevs. I don’t think people ever really consider the mental well-being of young children, and I think in our tech-centric world, we’re going to have to be more intentional in getting the littles up and moving more. Kind of crazy because you didn’t have to tell me twice in kindergarten to get moving. Evolution, amiright?

Speaking of, even though it was seven degrees a mere 5 days ago, it’s going to be pushing SEVENTY tomorrow! Tennessee weather is such an unpredictable beast! Speaking of beasts, we plan to seize the opportunity and go to the fantastic Knoxville Zoo in the morning. Novella is in a phase where she is crazy about any living thing. I’ve already had to drag her away from the monkeys (she was in an intense monkey phase), so I can’t wait to see how she handles the elephants tomorrow.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend!


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