January, 2011

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Next thing I know, I’m doing Full Wheel

Tuesday, January 18th, 2011

I wasn’t sure if I’d make it to yoga tonight.

I hadn’t really booked it or planned for it.  After running a webinar in the early evening [for my internship], I was doing some mental math on cost versus benefit.

A few things were working against me: I hadn’t eaten, really (and if I decided to go, I wouldn’t be able to eat much beforehand).  I didn’t really have the gear set-out, time left in the evening was ticking down, and 85% of the road between my condo and the studio is closed for a month.  To top it all off, I’m not even sure I have my water bottle with me in the car.

I decide to get out supper rather than chance it and try to make it all work.

But then, I decide to ‘just check’ and see if there’s a short/towel/shirt set handy.  There is.  I decide to finish off a few quick jobs for the next day and before I know it, I’m seeing if there’s a water bottle in my car while bundling up for a trip to the studio.  There is.  Rather than continuing on getting more major food together… I grab a quick orange for the short term.

I sign-in to one of the best classes, I’ve had in weeks.  …great parking spot,  great mat spot, great well, everything.  I feel connected, energetic, and awfully glad to be there.  It all just happens on cruise control.

In fact it all just happens like last night’s novel feat did.

I can only imagine how sick everyone is of hearing yoga lately.  I continue to talk, and type, (and do) it.  My guess is though you’d be MUCH more sick of complaining….. if this hadn’t become my winter, well,… sanctuary.

Comfort… in [overdue] dedication.

Monday, January 17th, 2011

I didn’t find A Fine Balance; it found me.  …in April 2009 to be exact.

I won it as a door prize at a teaching workshop series.  I began reading it then… and it followed me.  It followed me from classroom, to library office, to flooded house, to temporary house, to restored house, to new school.  …and tonight to warm, hibernation-filled condo.  If you’ve seen the novel it’s a bit of a daunting brick (unlike most of my high school finds, that were much shorter….. selected safe in the knowledge that I’m quite a slow reader, when reading fiction).

I finished it today.

Almost as much as I appreciated the novel (it was a great one!), I appreciate the sensation of accomplishing something so… well… overdue.

Now, all that’s left is to send a thank-you note to the team that supplied the prize.  Admittedly, their selection has taught me quite a lot.  Most English Language Arts teachers wouldn’t relish, celebrate, brag, and go on-and-on-and-on about finishing a [lengthy] book… I’m sure of it.  But let’s not kid ourselves:

I’m not most English Language Arts teachers.  =P

Monday’s Professional Trifecta

Sunday, January 9th, 2011

Tomorrow, I meet with my principal to discuss my teaching assignment for next year.  This, on the day that the online course I’m facilitating for our school board begins AND the day that the Spring term of university starts [it’s still weird to me that U of L considers the January term as Spring rather than Winter….. although, I appreciate the optimism].

That’s a lot of beginnings.

I’m more excited to see how it all unfolds than anxious it won’t unfold how it’s meant to.

…which, I’m hoping, is a good way to begin.

I guess, in a sense, tomorrow is my real New Year.

1 CENTs worth.

Thursday, January 6th, 2011

So.  The Brave 100.

Have you done your own Brave 100 yet?  (a.k.a. Mighty Life List… another example here or here).

I’m not sure how I feel about it, yet.  I don’t like thinking of it as a bucket list… because–let’s be honest–in even 10 years my passions and ideas of ‘a good time’ will probably change quite a bit.  I like to think of the 100 as things I certainly wouldn’t mind if they ended up in-motion.  I do know I need to change the formatting.  Luckily that’s pretty attainable.

I certainly want to get a few hyperlinked to the stories that result as they occur.

I kind of think there might be a little merit to writing down, er, typing goals though.  Just over a year ago I wrote some goals for the year.   I’d say I took a pretty good run at those (right down to the roller coaster and the waterslide).

PLUS, I do need to make my life more interesting.  I’m trying to write my introduction to the online course I’m teaching…… so far all it says is: teaching, studying, using technology, surviving.  Hardly a page turner.

If all else fails….. I’ll write a sentence or two about my unwavering love for the city that is Montreal.  Let’s be honest… I could probably write a list of 100 things I’d like to do/accomplish there alone.

    A first draft of… My Brave 100

    Sunday, January 2nd, 2011

    Speak on CBC Radio One | Order a meal in French in Paris | Visit Copenhagen and Jutlund | Attend a meditation retreat | Visit each province’s legislature grounds | Ride a rollercoaster with a current record | Throw an ‘event’ | Apply to speak at a conference I barely or don’t qualify for | Run a half marathon | Compete in an international Masters-level sporting competition | Rent an apartment for a week | Stay in a luxury hotel and order room service | Take an undergraduate course connected to no program | Play a djembe at Tam Tams on Mount Royal (or unencountered drumming circle) | Take a multi-week French immersion class somewhere not Bilingual (Montreal) | Attend a weekend yoga retreat and/or practice yoga for 10 consecutive years with some consistency | Bungee in Oceana again and on one other continent | Write about Calgary as an ‘insider’ | Discover five new things about Montreal | Discover Vancouver more authentically, connect with it | Attend a house party in Toronto |  Visit three new American cities | Play a new song on piano with both hands | Complete a triathlon | Volunteer for a festival/charity event | swim 50m under 30 seconds unassisted | dance outside in a country I’ve never been to yet | make a case for a guided tour at a venue that doesn’t offer tours | A second Manhattan in Manhattan | Participate in a summer solstice celebration | Help organize a winter solstice celebration | a solar eclipse | bike 123 km | Discover San Fransisco | Write and send 100 thank you notes | Own this/a condo | Own land | Attain a Master’s degree | Teach an undergraduate class | Take a date to Waterton Park | Be on a Committee/Board | Do a diving board flip at an outdoor pool I’ve never been to… bonus points for a one-and-a-half | 5 10m Jumps at 5 different pools with 10m planks the public are allowed to use | Total 5 years of West African experience | Tour an modern art gallery… immediately afterwards, attempt modern art | Take a visual art Class | Send a postcard from Saint Pierre/Miquelon | Eat Lobster from East Coast | Start a topical blog | Play a full water polo game by the actual rules | Send a Christmas Card from the United Nations |  Happy Baby pose on Eiffel Tower | Ride The Tube and mind the gap AND ride the Milleneum Ferris Wheel | spend an entire day on what’s displayed on a wall in my condo/house | Attend an Opening Ceremonies event | Take a behind the scenes tour | Lead a tour | Provide a Pecha Kucha/TedX/Reading/Story Telling experience | Perform headstand | Put $100 on black | Take a date to Butchart Gardens one evening | Zipline | Take a photograph at the Gopher Hole Museum | Sleep under a canopy | Waterslide at Tropical Islands near Berlin | Finish my Wreck this Journal | Finish the novel A Fine Balance | Attend a wine tasting | Visit a Pemberton in Vanuatu | Research a social science | Tent consecutive nights in the Rockies | Snowboard an entire weekend without breaking my elbow | Tube or Raft the Elbow… with a lifejacket, of course | Wall/rock climb | Attend an Expo/World Fair | Throw a dinner party | Participate in a charity fundraiser | Find and walk 10 labyrinths | Organize a game of Slippery Watermelon with my friends | Become a season pass holder | Emcee an event | Learn to Whistle | Write a Letter to the Editor (maybe not the Red Deer Advocate, since I’m already published there) | Take a last-minute trip | Visit a city’s tower and take the stairs | spend a whole day (or most of one) at the spa | backpack | throw a successful[ly] surprise[-ing] party | attend a festival | make and give (a) friendship bracelet(s) | Give something difficult up for Lent | Participate in a collective demonstration | Rent an event venue | Give a toast | Contribute to Wikipedia | Attend Canada Day in Ottawa | Make a reservation for something with a minimum 6 month waiting-list | Experience La tire d’érable (ou tire sur la neige) | find Stampede:Calgary::_________:x, where x = five other cities, attend then document | publish a book or equivalant