Wednesday, November 30, 2011

It's Wednesday

It's Wednesday...
It's snowing...the dog is sleeping, the house is quiet.
The fireplace is on...not real but the effect is still somewhat pleasant.
I just ranted on about my experiences as a teacher for over an hour
T is currently in the other room doing the same.
Planning to move to another continent has proven to be a long
and a lot more organized experience than I ever considered it would be...
The snow is not melting, it's finally white outside.
Nov. 30th...Would have been more appropriate, or I guess
fairytale like if it had happened on Dec.1...But I'll take today.
We have not written for a while. Life has been...well...slow more or less.

Hopefully something more exciting than the fact that it is snowing beautifully outside
will soon occur...
Until then the day currently consists off:

1) Interview with London Agency (check)
2)Write paper? (sooo don't want to)
3)Frolic in the snow!!
clearly in need of some inspiration. Maybe I will paint. Once my paper is done of course!
Also listening to this on repeat. Old school...pleasant, warm...sweet...


Thursday, November 17, 2011

What a teacher makes....

Sirens of "How much will you make as a teacher?", or the even more amusing "What will you make as a teacher?", always seem to chime when discussing my chosen line of work. Never is the first question, "What kind of satisfaction do you get in helping students reach their potential?", rather the focus on money (or the seemingly lack-thereof) always tops the list. Enjoy Taylor Mali's take on 'What A Teacher Makes', when asked that very question.


Saturday, November 12, 2011

Marc Chagall at the AGO

While visiting Toronto, an afternoon trip was made to the AGO to peruse the Chagall and Russian Avant Garde exhibit. Prior to visiting, I knew close to nothing about Marc Chagall except that he was a rather renowned artist who lived in France for the better part of his life. I left the exhibit knowing much more in regards to Chagall, but also understanding what his motivations were, and who he was as an artist.

The Exhibit provided a nice mix of Russian artists inspired, much like Chagall was, by their homeland and their culture. Chagall specifically drew upon his love of his town or shtetl of Vitebsk, located in present day Belarus. His admiration and dreamy outlook on life in his shtetl is all Chagall needed to inspire beautifully constructed artwork. He painted through a lens of an Eastern European Jew, showcasing his culture and everyday life which he was used to as a child and a teenager. The exhibit did a good job of displaying video art, and sculptures among the paintings, providing a variety of mediums in which artists of that period expressed themselves.

It was fascinating the way in which the "Russian Avant Garde" artists were able to draw upon their past, and their homes, to inspire their works. This inspiration is something that everyone can relate to; having a special location within our memories, influencing our everyday lives.



Sunday, November 6, 2011

The “Good-Bad-Good” analogy...

It boggles my mind how fast paced, how unpredictable and how often (not always) but how often a single day can encompass a million different emotions. Bring out all your good and bad sides, have you laughing, crying, pissed off beyond words, flabbergasted, excited, contempt, bored, scared, strong....Those days are truly the best.

That was yesterdays day:

-when you catch yourself smiling because you walk by three grungy boys singing, playing guitars and tambourines on St. Laurent when its 5 degrees outside.

-when the thought of taking a bus for 20 minutes is making your tummy cringe but when you get off the bus you meet up with a friend you have not seen for months and the initial meeting starts with a gleeful leap and a 30 second embrace making the bus ride out totally worth it.

-when the walk that used to be the inescapable route to class all of a sudden is the most pleasant stroll you’ve ever had because it fills your head with memories.

-when you see familiar faces on busy streets of people you have never spoken to, but they leave you with a sense of comfort because you realize that not that much has changed since you’ve been gone. 

-when store owners are excited to see you and catch up as they noticed that you have not been around for a little while.

and then all of a sudden, even though everything seems to be going perfectly well and your day could really not get any better...little things begin to occur that bring out unpleasant emotions like:

-your gloves that you are wearing for the first and a half time all of a sudden disappear...did they fall out of your pockets? Did you leave them on the ground when you were tying your boots? You will never know but this is quite upsetting.

-your living situation, your nook, the roof you rely on even though leaking periodically all of a sudden becomes a hostile environment. The leak on the ceiling starts to look a lot worse as you are forced to pack everything you own because of a unexpected, angry, frustrating, and totally unnecessary, perhaps miscommunicated roommate situation.

Once this happens you scramble to figure out your 5Ws...What, Where, When, Who and WHY!?!

Then you have a huge sigh of relief when you realize that you have people around you who have your back:
-Who hold you when you need to be held
-Who will help you because they love you.
-Who laugh with you about how ridiculous your situation is
-Who will even wait to play with their new iphone that is waiting for them, still unwrapped...because you come first.
-Who will give you advice
 and Who are willing to take you in....

One of my CTs once told me, during parent teacher interviews...leave the parents happy...
tell them a good thing about their kids...
then perhaps the not so good thing...
but always leave them with a good...

So thank you, thank you, thank you friends and family for always being there to leave us with the good.


Saturday, November 5, 2011

The Official Holiday Drink...

At Starbucks, sort of a new home away from home for the last few month. It is warm (now)...the last time I was here (2 weeks ago) the AC was on full blast which did not mix well with the flooding and overbearing wind outside...Today however is different. Its cozy inside, Bob Marley just started playing, its a beautiful sunny day outside...Crisp.

Now I understand that Starbucks might not be the most interesting topic to write about, but I have to say that I am beyond words happy with the holiday drink options this year...well one drink in particular. Here is the story....

SO, November 1st rolled around and I had a sad realization...The pumpkin spiced latte would now no longer be on the menu and since that was my October drink and I was quite fond of it I was not happy...Now what was making me even more upset was the idea of those candy cane lattes that are usually on the menu for Christmas...or eggnog latte...lets just say I am NOT a fan.
BUT as I walked into our home away from home the first thing I read was "Latte au Caramel Brulee"...WHAT! AND IT HAS BURNT CARAMEL FLAKES ON TOP!! 
That is it...I have found my holiday drink. For all those who are for some reason hesitant to try it because it looks tooo good to be true...let me tell you, it is sweet...quite sweet...but if you have a few minutes to spare, get some whipped cream on it, sprinkle a crap load of those delish burnt caramel flakes on top and enjoy!
All in all I see it as the perfect winter drink minus the cliche of Christmas attached to it...Nobody actually wants to drink a latte with candy canes in it...