Friday, October 28, 2011

Trusting Spellcheck...

With the summer, I know many of you missed the opportunity to laugh at students who have the mantra of "In Spellcheck We Trust".  Well, here's a great one for you.

My creative writing students just finished up their Horror/Mystery/Thriller assignment.  This example comes from a story where two cops are trying to solve some murders when they find another body.  One cop asks if the other thinks it's the same killer, and we have this in response.

"Most defiantly.  Not a bone in my body doubts that we have a cereal killer on our hands."

Aren't most killers defiant?  Especially those who harbor an unnatural hatred of breakfast foods. 

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Hug your children

It happened again.  Last night, a student from the school I worked at took his own life.  Not one that I taught, but it does cause a ripple effect, makes people wonder if something could be done, if there were signs...wonder...

This is my fifth year teaching, and I think there has been a suicide each year.

It's hard to say what happens to make someone take their own life.  And really, it isn't something that usually can be pinned on one particular thing. 

Here's what I do know.  All people, quirky, strange, gay, Mormon, jock, nerd, misfit, dork, geek, emo, goth need to feel loved.  Okay, so they drive you crazy.  So what if you just don't get them? 

Mother Teresa is one of my heroes.  I loved her and was significantly more moved when she passed than Princess Diana (they died either the same day or within a day).   She really put it best.

People are unreasonable, illogical and self-centered.
Love them anyway.
So today, hug your kids.  Take the few minutes to do something with them to make them feel special.  Don't roll your eyes at the kids who look different than you think they should.  Remember you were once a teenager, life isn't that easy at that age.  Look a stranger in the eye.

It may not save a life, but it will make a difference. 


Thursday, October 20, 2011

My Other Me

After the conference I went to at UVU, I realized I needed a blog to just write about writing stuff.  I really didn't want to take away from this blog, the reading updates (yes, I know, they're behind...coming...), kids stuff, teacher insanities, pursuit after my own happiness stuff. 

And I'm not sure how much you want to read all the writing stuff anyway.

I am hoping that if there is an art/dream type thing you are chasing after, some of the words over there would be helpful, but it is pretty geared toward writing. 

I guess this is mainly an FYI post - would love to see you over there if you want, but in writing there, I feel like I can also make more of a habit to write here.

You can either click on my profile to find it or just click here.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Being pushed back to me

During the first four years of my teaching career, I went through this strange experience.  I felt incredible satisfaction as a teacher, really felt like I got to the point where I was honed in on my kids, their passions, my ability to support them in those and feel like my marriage was the best it's ever been. 

Yet, I was lost.  Unsatisfied.  Depressed.

Yes, part of it was my physical appearance, and there are still those pesky last ten pounds I would LIKE to lose, but if they are here to stay, I'm not dissatisfied. 

Outside of a few online exceptions and work colleagues, I really didn't have friends.  Part of it was my absolute and complete lack of desire at belonging to a Bunco group - so not what I wanted. 

I took on an attitude, especially during completing my Master's, that was "I am woman, watch me conquer the whole freakin' world."  My music reflected this, my mindset reflected this.  And I think to have the success I did, this was necessary.

But each of these caused me to become lost, feel incredibly lonely and completely forget who Tasha was.

Then I started writing again.  And I got invited to be part of a writing group. 

And one night, a particularly low night, my husband with his very blunt manner but with very good intent, told me if I didn't like my life, I could either keep crying about it or figure out something to do to change it. 

In the last two weeks, I have been to a writing conference at UVU, attended a particularly productive writer's group and spent eight hours yesterday with Mette Ivie Harrison and several Southern Utah writers, receiving good critiques but some pretty decent praise. 

Enoch has been nothing but supportive.  For me to travel north last week, he had to cover some things with the kids and take a short day of work.  He puts the kids to bed when I go to my writer's group.  He is affectionate when I'm leaving, excited to hear about things when I return. 

I feel a great deal of satisfaction with my life, and a huge part of that is because of him. 

Yup, I'm pretty lucky.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Are you ever alone?

Okay, this isn't some deep philosophical question or even something about lonliness, depression, etc.  This is probably primarily a question for moms.

Quick assignment.  Open your pictures folder on your computer, and count how many pictures are of JUST you in the last two years. 

Yea, now. 


You back?  Okay.  How many did you find?  I took some time over the weekend to look on all three computers I have access to and that have pictures on it.  Guess how many I found?


I do not have one picture of just me.

Why did I suddenly realize this?  Remember how I'm working really hard on being a writer?  Well, I went to a conference where they really encouraged people to start making themselves a brand, even way before publication opportunities, so that there is a following, etc.  So I started a new blog, with a blogging schedule, for this purpose, and to keep me focused, and I wanted to have a picture of just me because then I'm my own brand.  You know?

There aren't any.  Okay, there are two, with me eating a cookie.  From an angle that makes it look like my neck morphs into my chin, which is a great look for a linebacker in the NFL, but not the preferable marketing approach I wanted for a 33 year old female.

I know, right?  Crazy.

When talking about this with a friend, she mentioned that once we have kids, we are no longer our own entity.  The other picture I could maybe use is on my teacher page at the website, 30 pounds ago, and I HATE it. 

I guess I'm going to have to start figuring out how to take pictures of myself. 

Don't worry.  I won't succomb to the trend of making kissy faces when I do though.