The build-up of Christmas is like nothing else. The buzz of Santa, crazy Elf-on-a-Shelf shenanigans, crazy shoppers fighting over parking spaces, holiday music, holiday parties, the list goes on. I miss the Christmas Eve excitement–needing to get to bed early so Santa could come, leaving out glittery oatmeal and carrots for the reindeer and cookies and milk for Santa (or if my brothers got to pick Santa’s beverage, a Heineken). We had our Christmas Eve fun, a few family games, crazy amounts of food, and I fell asleep so quickly I didn’t even hear Santa’s arrival.
Christmas brings a sense of calmness and happiness. While two days of nonstop family time might test that calmness just a bit ;), it only comes once a year. 6 days to the New Year. 6 days to a fresh start, to new resolutions. 6 days left to get things done. To clean my room (after some prompting by a certain 6 year old), to get into a running routine (half marathon less than 3 months away), to open my work bag. Though I suppose I can wait to open my bag until after January 1st. 3 more hours of Christmas…a girl can dream.
There have been many times this fall when I’ve thought, I miss writing on the blog. I miss having a place to share my thoughts, and I’ve had plenty of hilarious fourth grade adventures to share. And then things got busy again. Writing on the blog became something that I would do next week. Then the week after. First year teaching is no joke. The biggest lesson I’ve learned has been the importance of letting go. Letting go of stressing about lessons, trying to remember the exact words, letting go of not totally understanding what fourth graders are supposed to learn, and having to accept that I can learn as I go-as long as I know things a day before they do, I’m okay.
In a never-ending quest for balance, I discovered the best medicine for being overworked, under-rested and a little stressed (okay, a lot), was home. My family, my friends, my bed. Quick weekend trips home made all the difference. Even when one relaxing weekend was followed with a bout of shingles. No need to harp on that, but let’s just say that I wouldn’t wish shingles on anyone. Ever. I’m finally feeling healthy again, taking another look at priorities, recognizing the importance of fun, working out and setting goals. Oh and enjoying Christmas. A few people might even argue I’m a bit obsessed (ahem, roommates). Cookies. Snow. Hot chocolate. Cookies. Christmas lights. Presents. Wrapping paper. Holiday music. Cookies. Family. Break. Love. Clearly the roommates might be onto something 😉
Three more wake-ups and Christmas break awaits. My plan is to come back rested and relaxed, ready for the craziness and laughs our crew of 24 fourth graders provides everyday. And whether or not I plan to, I need to start getting serious about running. Getting serious about my half-marathon in March and finishing Boston in April. I’m setting the bar high for 2014. More running, more racing, more fun, more blogging. And I’m setting the bar high for the last two weeks of December. Cue the carols, its go time.