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How many more moments?

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How many more moments do we have?
I recently listened to a podcast by Jesse Itzler, author of Living With A Seal and Living With A Monk (Highly Recommend). In the podcast Jesse talks about his experience in living in a monastery, living with monks and he talked about a couple things that really got me thinking and put some perspective on living my best life.
He talks a lot about life, how many days left we have on this earth, and what are we doing with a time. He used an example, talking about his parents. If your parents are approximately  68 years old, and an average person lives to 78, that means they will potentially live 10 more years. If you only see your parents one or two times a year that’s potentially only 10 more times that you will see them. WOW!! This was scary to me.
What are you doing to maximize your experience in relationships with those people?
Too often we get distracted by every day lives, social media, technology and other stimuli. We don’t necessarily take the time t…

Say Yes To The Banana

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Say Yes To The Banana
The walk a thon is one of our biggest fundraisers every year. Every year, teachers compete to see how many laps they can get in and the kids create an energy that is contagious. Music is pumping, parents are cheering, and everyone is doing their best to complete as many laps as possible in the time allotted, all while raising money for the school.
As I do every year, I set a goal for myself. I am currently semi-training for a half marathon and my long run that week was supposed to be 8 miles. Instead of doing it that Saturday, I thought I would do it alongside the students. I would run 1-1.5 miles with each group and then put on the Hawk mascot costume and then run some more. At the end of the day, I would have 8 miles and my long run for the day would be done.
The day started off great! I was running strong with the first group of kids. At 1.5 miles, I continued my run into my office, while alrighty sweaty, changed into the Hawk mascot costume. Then I would head…

It's Not Easy

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If being an educator was easy, anyone could do it.
Throughout my time in education there is one thing that stands out to me. Being an educator is not easy.  
When I entered my first year of teaching, I was not as good at building relationships as I am now. At least I wasn’t as intentional. Even though I knew that relationships were the foundation for everything, I wasn’t very good at building them. Every year I would start by doing some type of team building activities, where we create a culture of community and trust. We would build relationships and students knew they could come to me if they had a problem.
I was a elementary physical education teacher that traveled to six sites a week, and I was teaching anywhere from 90-120 students at a time. It wasn’t the easiest first teaching job, but I wouldn't have traded it for the world. It taught me more than I could ever imagine and opened my eyes to even more.
I had standards that we worked towards each and every week. There were ass…

Follow The Leader

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There is a blind man in New York City that everyday wakes up and heads to the subway station, where he sits and begs for money from those riding throughout the day. Day in and day out this man heads to the same place, with only his knowledge of the area and his probing cane.
On the morning of September 11, 2001 this man was on the subway station platform when the first of the two towers fell. The power instantly went out and everything went dark. The subway riders  started to panic and were in complete hysteria, they did not know how to act and could not find their way out in the complete darkness.
At that moment of time the man had a choice: he could get out of there and avoid the mass exodus/confusion or he could stay and help others find their way out of the tunnel. With a loud voice, he got others attention and said “I have been walking around this station for years in the dark and I can lead you out of here now, but you need to follow me.”
He suggested that others would build a ch…

If She Can Do It, So Can I

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As I was driving to a principal meeting this week, I drove by a woman wearing a middle school sweatshirt from a school where I had previous taught. The school is a great middle school, but it wasn't her neighborhood school. She was walking in the rain in a direction away from the school by herself with only her umbrella in hand. Even though the school was a mile to a mile and a half away, the timing, the outfit, the situation, made it obvious that she was returning home after walking her child to school to ensure they made it.

The neighborhood that I was driving through is a low socioeconomic area, where choices are limited because of a variety of reasons. Having also taught in this neighborhood, the one thing that I knew was that a great deal of parents that would do whatever it takes to make their children succeed.

This woman made me start to think and reflect on my own journey.

We often make different excuses for why we can't do things. No budget, no time, no resources, th…

Empower The Right Person

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Empower The Right Person
I am sitting in my living room watching my kids work on their science projects and I quickly started to reflect on my own experiences with science fairs. As an elementary school student, I would enter the science fair every year, no matter the focus. I would always talk with my parents and/or my teachers about an idea I had and how I could make it better or test a hypothesis. I loved it! It was my time to experiment and work through challenges that were put in front of me. My parents/ teachers were there to pick me up if I fell, but not there to step in until I absolutely needed them.
This independence of allowing the child to do the project taught me work ethic and if I wanted something I needed to work for it. I never won the blue ribbon, but I won so much more. I won because I learned the value of hard work and if I wanted something, I needed to be persistent in my pursuit.
Fast forward many years to where I am now. I have taken those same lessons and passed …

All Day, Every Day

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All Day, Every day
I was sitting in a meeting the other day and the room was filled with sneezing, coughing and running noses. It was apparent that not everyone was feeling 100%, but they were there trying their best to participate. Even though I was not under the weather, I started to think about how I can stay healthy when everyone else is coming down with something.
Reflecting on the day and the situation, I relate it back to education. As parents, students, co-workers get tired and unmotivated, it is our job to keep the focus on the right thing. The focus must remain on KIDS. During this time of year there are so many distracting elements that try to pull us away. Stay strong, stay focused and keep pushing forward.
I don’t wake up everyday with the energy and desire to get up and get after it. I must reach into my toolbox and use those tools to help myself, help others.
Here are some reminders on how to Bring It Every Day, All Day:
Celebrations and Acts of Kindness- How are you cele…