Sunday, October 05, 2014

It Gets Crisp in the Fall

Fall has begun in Houston and I couldn't be happier. Fall, Winter and Spring are my three favorite seasons in Houston because they all kind of merge together to make one big season that isn't Summer.

“Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall.” —F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby.


 I totally agree. That's how I feel about Fall. It's a new beginning, with school and football season starting and all.  This fall there's a marked change in the air. One is my new job and my new beginning. I'm starting a brand new chapter in my life working for Houston Community Newspapers and the other is the change that has occurred with my son Seth this year.

So far this school year Seth has gone through such a change. It all started a few weeks before school started when he completed 4 weeks of math tutoring at Sylvan. I noticed a marked change in his concentration and on how seriously he took his studies. He was very concerned about completing a math summer school class before going back to 5th grade. I'm so glad I made the investment in Sylvan. I don't know if it was what they taught him or just an all over change in his attitude or both but he started 5th grade with a completely different attitude.

You all probably remember all my posts about the challenges that I have been through with Seth. Last school year things took a turn for the worse and it was so bad I didn't even blog about it. Seth's school was one of the schools being investigated for cheating on the STAAR test. He lost 2 of his 3 teachers last year and had a tumultuous year. He also found out at the end of the school year that he was losing his new principal who had just completed her first year there.

This year he started 5th grade with a new principal and 3 new teachers. When I attended his Open House I could see right away that these teachers got him and his sense of humor. I think that they genuinely like him and enjoy teaching him and Seth feels that. So it's a wonderful and rare combination of Seth going to school with a better attitude and having great teachers. I feel like I've won the teacher lotto this year.

He brought home the science homework above and I was all "What?" Then he brought home his progress report and I almost fell out. He had all 90s/As and a 100 in Language Arts. I felt so much joy and he was so proud of himself. I loved how happy he was. It made me happier.

So far so good! It's been a good Fall. I started my new job 2 weeks ago and it's been a good start. I can't wait to really start selling and making a bonus. That's when I will feel like I'm really doing a good job and truly working.  On to a better Fall and starting over and finding Seth a great middle school.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Back in the Saddle Again

This has been a busy month for me so far. I've gotten back in the saddle again in two different ways.

Nine months ago I purchased what I think is one of the most beautiful bikes. I was so excited to ride it and when I did I rode it with enthusiasm and a little bit of fear. I hadn't been on a bike in twenty years, except for that one time when I was at a conference at a ranch with a bunch of hospital HR people and I almost killed myself on a bike that was too tall for me.

 
I did okay at first but pretty soon my fear got the best of me and I had a bad fall that I could have avoided. I landed on my right foot and I had to have my foot x-rayed. I thought I had broken my big toe, but thank goodness I didn't. I ended up going to therapy for a few weeks. It took a lot longer to heal than I thought it would and that, coupled with fear, kept me off of the bike for quite a few months.
 
Last month I decided to bite the bullet and get in the saddle again. I started off with a short ride to get my bearings again but then I stopped. On September 2 I made it a point to ride as many days as I can leading up to September 20 when there will be a Tour de Northside bike ride. I've been training ever since and I can say that I could easily do 6 miles at this point. I would like to do the 10 mile ride but my daughter has lacrosse later that day so I may have to do the 4 mile ride with her.
 
I'm also getting back in the saddle again by going back to work. I'm going back to the newspaper business. It's what I know. It's what I do best. And as my father said in his last Dicho a Day, "Stick to the path you know." So there you go. I am.
 
I've accepted a position with Houston Community News handling major accounts. I'm pretty excited about what that will entail and calling on the accounts that they've outlined for me.
 
This is my last week of being self-employed and I have to tie up a bunch of loose ends with my client. I can't sell for her any more starting on the 22nd so I have to make sure that all her records are updated and people are in her Salesforce. It will be a busy last week and then on the 22nd I'll have to report to work.
 
I'm excited to get back to working for a corporation. I've pulled out my Lean In book that I bought and never read. I think I should read it now that I'm going back into the corporate world. I need to be reminded of what it's like to work in a corporation and to get assimilated again into the politics of being a woman. That's always intriguing.
 
Last week! I better make it count. More than anything I need to get things done that I won't be able to do when I'm working. Let the count down begin!
 
 

Monday, September 01, 2014

Labor Day Musings & I Survived the First Week of School

I think the first week of school is hardest on the parents. Especially if you work from home and you're used to rolling out of bed and starting work in your pajamas if you want to. When school starts you are definitely up earlier, you are required to get dressed, (well not required, but if you drive them to school in your pajamas you will inevitably have to get out of your car for something), and you get to start your day early.

First Day of School 2014

I found that I was exhausted at the end of every day. To add on top of that I had three interviews back to back. Then to add on top of that I received news that a cousin who only comes to visit every 10 years was going to stop through town overnight and I needed to clean up at least a little.

It was definitely a tough first week but we survived and made it through that first week just in time for our first holiday and long weekend.

Saturday I had a wild night, which is very rare for someone of my age. It started with some fantastic sushi at Azuma for dinner and then we ended up at Red Ox Bar & Grill for an event. We had a really great time, too many margaritas to count, shots and a guy even demonstrated a lap dance for us. Not on me but on a couple of friends and it was all very entertaining.

With all that said, I did not want to do any of the regular Labor Day festivities of barbecues or the beach. I just want to rest, do laundry, do the grocery shopping for the week, all at a leisurely pace. I relaxed most of yesterday and watched a movie with the kids and their dad in the evening. We watched "Blended". Very sweet movie! I'm not that crazy about Adam Sandler but I love him with Drew Barrymore. After the kids cleared out I watched "Masters of Sex." Love that show!

Today I'm washing uniforms and I'm about to go grocery shopping. I'm saving all my energy for the second week of school and to start my bike training.  I'm going to do the Tour de Northside bike ride on September 20 and I want to start riding my bike every day up until then. The tour has either a 6 mile or 9 mile option, but I haven't even done 3 miles since my bike accident months ago. I've already downloaded the "Map my Ride" app on my phone to get ready.  Let the training begin!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

First Day of School Tomorrow, A New Year, Another Milestone for Kids

Tomorrow is the first day of school. Both my kids are crossing milestones. My daughter will be in 8th grade, the last year of middle school and my son will be in 5th grade, the last year of elementary school. This fall we will be visiting high schools and middle schools!


It seems like just yesterday they were this young. Here is a photo of them on the first day of 4th grade and 1st grade. Unbelievable that they are as old as they are now! They were 6 ad 9 in this picture and they are 10 and 13 now.

I was having a conversation with my dad today about how time flies and I said, "You, if anyone, should know that at 90." He said, "By the time I knew it I was an old man and I didn't even feel it. Time doesn't wait for you." What an important lesson to us all to get things done now!

By the way, Daddy is back on a roll with his Dicho a Day on my YouTube channel. He shares his nuggets of wisdom in Spanish and I provide a translation/explanation.


So tomorrow is the start of a new school year, a good time to revise resolutions I made in January and to see where I am at so far this year. It's also an opportunity to set new goals for the school year  New things are on the horizon and I'm excited to get started.

Have a great first day tomorrow everyone, parents with kids returning to school and teachers. To quote one of my favorite movies, "You've Got Mail." "Don't you love New York in the fall? It makes me want to buy school supplies. I would send you a bouquet of newly-sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address.