Sound Smarter


This poster I just encountered recently reminds me that it doesn’t take much to make yourself look ignorant. No matter what, though, the key is trying. Too often, for fear of looking stupid, I refuse to attempt new things. What I liked about this poster is that it can be fun trying.

Haiku in Time


I spent some time writing Haikus with some students recently. If you aren’t familiar with this poetry form, here are the key points:

  • Haikus originate in Japan
  • They are an unrhymed poem made up of 3 lines and 17 syllables
  • The first and third line has 5 syllables and the second line has 7 syllables.
  • These poems are to be brief but convey deep feelings

While I was working with the students I remembered a Haiku I wrote my mom when I was in elementary school (oh, so long ago). It just popped in my head as I was listening to their haikus.

The river will flow
Like a dream from the heavens
And people will dance

It’s amazing I can still remember it. It is also amazing that it still has meaning to me.

Here are some other poet’s renditions. Maybe they will remember 3 decades from now what they wrote.

The winter snow falls
The dead leaves covered in snow
Piling up everywhere

Hot summer air
Having Family time in the sun
Enjoying the birds singing

The inspiration
Flowers and stars in the air
It blows me away

Is it so hard to say “good morning”?


I like to say “good morning” to people as a greeting. I think it sets the right tone by 1) acknowledging someone’s presence, 2) greeting them in a positive manner and 3) getting them to interact with you by responding back. It is dialogue communication 101 at its finest.

Most people, however, do not feel the way I do. So, I have worked hard over the last few months to greet people in another language. It sets people back when you say, “gunaydin” (Good morning in Turkish), and causes them to be drawn into your welcome. “What?” they say. Then I pepper them with German, French, Italian, Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese, Swedish, Hawaiian, Arabic, Australian, and even Sign Language.

I also try to use a different language than the one that the person is used to hearing. For example, I never say, “buenos dias” to someone I believe is of Latin descent. I try an Asian dialect to help them interact with another culture. There are so many languages out there, they are fun to share! And that is what happening. When I interact with people of different ethic backgrounds they share their “good morning” with me in their language. I keep adding to the cornucopia of morning salutations!

If you want to get in on this there is a list of greetings below. Try one a week. You’ll be glad you did.

Winter Hammock


There isn’t inappropriate weather, just inappropriate clothing. – Karla Barker

Winter doesn’t have to be miserable. It can be quite fun if you have the right equipment. As a Christmas present, our daughter received a hammock. To show it off we went outside and set it up. It was cold, but she hung out in the swing for quite a while. Don’t let winter get the best of you, but make the best of it.

Things Kids Say


The other day I was at a school that messed with my esteem. Let me explain. First, there was a student who said to me,

“You don’t look like a science teacher. You look more like an art teacher.”

I said, “Really? How’s that?”

He replied, “You have a colorful way about you.”

Floating for most of the day with that beautiful comment, my bubble was popped by another student who was walking down the hall and yelled out to me–

“What’s up ma’douche!”

My feet quickly came down to earth.

Honestly, though, I smiled inside at both of them.

It’s Not a Socky Gift, So Ask For Some!


One of my favorite things are creative socks. In fact, if you are looking for a great gift to give me, try these two:

There is something about creative socks that gets a smile on my face. Maybe it’s because something exciting is going on undetected. Or, maybe I just like a splash of color in my life. The attention doesn’t hurt, of course. And, it sets me apart from all those mono-chromed sockers out there.

You don’t have to break the bank, either. Even though both of these sites have expensive socks, you just have to wait for the deals. Styles go out of style, so you just have to be patient. The picture with all the socks is around $20 of socks (including shipping). Plus, get your mother-in-law to get them as Christmas presents. They like making you happy and adding a little color to your life, too.

No matter what brand you get, make sure when you get into wearing great socks they have the following attributes.

  1. Padded: Your feet deserve it
  2. Mix and match colors. I love wearing 2 different socks from 2 different pairs
  3. Ankle height (or higher)
  4. Machine washable. Believe it or not some socks have special washing instructions.
  5. Inside jokes. This isn’t a must, but it’s nice to have a sock set that means something that not everyone gets.

Put it on your Christmas list. You won’t regret. it.