How They Revived My Love of Teaching.

Four high school girls wearing masks are standing in front of a school bus.
Four high school girls wearing masks are standing in front of a school bus.
image by Andy Dean Photography on Shutterstock

There I was blowing soap bubbles and waving goodbye to students as the buses moved slowly out of the campus parking lot.

All the teachers from our small, rural school district joined together to signal the end of another school year. And in some way bring positive closure to what many felt was the most disastrous academic experience educators and students may ever go through.

The end of a school year usually brings a feeling of relief. This year was different. Yes, there was some relief. But we also felt a sense of wonderment about the year we just surivive.

It is possible to get back into the driver’s seat.

photo by Zastolksiy Victor on Shutterstock

Let me start by apologizing. Seems I’ve done too much of that lately. Apologizing for not getting things done on time that is. But I truly was “hitting the wall.” That’s my excuse, if you can call it that, for not publishing anything new for months.

Life never goes as planned. We have all experienced that, right? Especially over the last year and a half. Even our attempts to get back on track can be more time consuming and frustrating than those unexpected events that interfere with our plans.

Planning Ahead Wasn’t Enough

I knew returning to the classroom last fall would put a…

A poem about change and aging.

image by Russia Arkhyz on Shutterstock

Accepting My Autumn

My horse labored the last few feet

As we crested the hill

My reluctant heart and mind

Adding to his burden.

His heaving chest

Expanding and contracting

Beneath me

As we come to grips with our bearings.

We stood weary from the long ride,

Expected to move on,

Unsure of where we were going.

What direction from here?

There were many trails,

But no familiar path.

Just simple arrows pointing waywardly

Amidst a jumble of color,

Shades of green, gold, russet

Separate, but meshed

Like horse and rider.

I contemplated the route I should…

Why is it so difficult to say no to a cup of joe?

Photo by Drew Coffman on Unsplash

I pulled my coffee mug from under the single-cup brewing station I set up behind my desk. It’s a must-have addition to my classroom teacher essentials.

Before taking my first sip, I lifted the fresh brew to my nose and took a deep whiff. Ahhh, yes. This will get me through first period.

From the back of the room, one of my early arrival high school students broke the reverie.

“I don’t really like coffee,” Gabby said as she sat at her desk slowly spinning a double shot caramel vanilla latte.

Her comment not only came out of the blue…

Using the directions to figure out the life area influences of your home.

Photo by Denise Jans on Unsplash

It’s been a year and a half since we bought our old house. We knew from the beginning it was going to take a great deal of work to get it to the place where we felt really comfortable living here.

I felt it was important to live in the space for a while. To get a feel for what worked and what didn’t. And mostly, nothing does. Work that is.

As we begin the planning for the changes we want to make, I want to incorporate the principles of Feng Shui. …

Humor

How Do You Get Rid of Your Extra Zucchini?

When even the deer refuse to eat it.

image by Voyagerix on Shutterstock

It’s 5 o’clock in the morning and I hear a strange noise near my front porch. I flick on the outdoor light just in time to see the butt end of a deer prancing out the front gate. To my horror, six more go dashing off in all directions when I stepped outside.

To add to the chaos, I discovered eight cows in my backyard a few minutes later. I guess they were trying to sneak into the party but couldn’t fit through the back gate.

Now it’s not that unusual to have animals around. I live in a…

Sometimes you just need to have a good cry.

image by LIghtfield Studios on Shutterstock

People are always dumping off stray cats around the farms and ranches where I live. It’s a sad truth, but one I’ve learned to live with.

The cats survive or they don’t. I occasionally feed them out near the barn, but mostly they live off of mice and other small rodents.

I treat the cats like the other wild animals around our home. They remain feral and I usually remain unattached. It’s better for both of us this way.

This winter, a small black cat showed up, meowing sadly and gobbling up any food I set out for her. She…

Bringing in the positive vibes doesn’t have to be expensive.

image by Photo Junction on Shutterstock

Purchasing an old home with the intent of remodeling can be a challenge. I should know. My husband and I bought our third fixer-upper about a year and a half ago.

Although this is not the oldest house we’ve owned, it certainly is the most in need of renovation. Not in the basic structure, but definitely in the layout and the “livability” of the space.

It is a very chopped up house, meaning the rooms are small and there isn’t a flow from one space to the next. It lacks any feeling of energy and harmony.

Remodeling will have to…

A flash fiction story.

Photo by Uwe Conrad on Unsplash

The moment Earl walked in the door, I knew something was up. His mood had been a roller coaster all week. This morning he had slipped out of bed without a word, no demand for coffee or his lunch to be made, not a kiss goodbye, nothing.

I stopped stirring the pot and watched him as he stood in the doorway, neither in nor out, his eyes avoiding me.

“I think,” he said, “it’s time for a change.”

“What did you have in mind?” …

How I explained it to my husband in practical terms.

Photo by Elijah G on Unsplash

About a year and a half ago, my husband and I bought a piece of property. The location was great. Very private with lots of visiting wildlife, pasture for my horses, and a big shop for his growing trucking business.

Unfortunately, it also came with a house. An old, outdated, definite fixer-upper. It’s only redeeming feature was a fantastic view from the deck.

With the promise we would make the necessary changes as we could afford to, I agreed to the purchase of the property. The owner made us an offer that quickly sealed the deal for us.

My husband…

Mikey Sackman

teacher, writer, lover of history, a small town gal sharing her perception on country living and life in general

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