I am not even going to make excuses for neglecting my beloved blog and my writing. So, instead of grading a stack of tests given on the last day of the first grading period (we are 1/4 of the way to summer vacation, mes amis) by a veteran teacher who should know better, I am going to write/type some random thoughts on this Thursday that feels like a Friday (the kiddies do not have class tomorrow-- it's a teacher workday).
- I love fall. Above is the view out of the window where I am sitting right now. The leaves are changing colors, the sky is blue and the air has taken on a chilly tone. I could live in fall forever. I would miss the almond blossoms in Provence in March, but I am only thinking of automne at this very moment.
- Technology is a wonderful thing until it isn't. It isn't when kids use a translator to write their French sentences for them instead of using their brains. It isn't when people talk on their phones or text when driving. Driving is serious business and should be treated that way. It isn't when people text instead of talking to the person across the table from them or when parents take their young child to dinner and then prop up the phone or iPad and play a movie. It isn't when mean messages are posted and hurtful things are said. It is when you post Zidane is the Personne de la Semaine and I can show my students the infamous head-butt incident on YouTube. It is when I can see today's photos of Mme P's students and their Vente de Gâteaux at the market in Villeneuve-lès-Avignon. Muffins, cookies, brownies... Bravo!
- It is wonderful when Mme P can share videos of the Camargue with me. Watch this and you will understand why I had the Croix de Camargue tattooed on my ankle. Well, maybe. Such beauty. (I will not think of the big white beast that threw me off his back in 2007. The kiddies really want to go horseback riding in the Camargue in March...)
- Life is precious. Days slip by quickly and turn into weeks, months and years. Tell your loved ones how much they mean to you. Have some well-deserved fun. Don't worry so much about all the stuff that needs to be done. (This advice is for me.)
- Character counts. I am tired of athletes and other famous people who say it doesn't. I want my children and my students to understand that it does. It's helping others, doing the right thing, working hard, and practicing empathy that counts at the end of the day. Not how much money is in your bank account or how well you did on a test or where you go to college.
- Dress up for Halloween (or whenever you feel like it). Be silly. I have to work on my costume this weekend. I DO actually have an idea. This falls under the category known in middle school as "If you can't beat 'em, join 'em." Halloween falls on a Thursday this year. And yes, we have school the next day. Pictures will be taken and posted.
- Have a guilty pleasure or five and indulge in it/them. Romance novels involving handsome French pastry chefs and chocolate makers? Dark chocolate? Movies on the Hallmark Channel? Singing out loud to the radio in the car on the way to/from work? A glass of red Côtes du Rhône while making dinner? Guilty, guilty, guilty. And a nice way to stay sane.
Okay, after school study hall is over and now I can pack up the tests, stash them in my bag and carry them home. I have managed to stay awake and get some random thoughts published! A good day.
Bon appétit to all! Recipes from my students who love to cook coming soon...