Saturday, October 25, 2014

30 day journaling project- Day 4

The prompt for today is to bullet point my day. Interesting!
(Typical day as an elementary school guidance counselor)
*6:00 Wake up
*6:50 out the door
*7:10 read a Psalm or Proverbs in my car
*7:20 check morning emails
*7:45 mic check 1, 2, 1, 2 and here we go to hectic cafeteria duty
*8:15 morning announcements
*8:30 5th grade classroom guidance
9:30 planning time to return phone calls, plan for schoolwide events
10:32 3rd grade classroom guidance
11:00 Lunch duty (need I say more)
11:42 4th grade classroom guiance
12:30 grab a quick lunch
1:00 see teachers about concerns
1:30 return emails and see students as needed
2:30 begin for dismissal
3:30 work is done and home I go
4:00 nap
5:00 workout
6:00 dinner and errands
7:00 chill and relax
9:45 off to bed to start again in the morning



Sunday, October 19, 2014

30 before 30 (How goes it)

I am about halfway through my 29th year, so I figured it would be good to look at my 30 before 30 list and take a little inventory. Check-in on this list of goals that I hope to complete by April 28th, 2015. The original list is below, with completed goals in bold, asterisks by in progress goals and edits or changes in italicizes (Yes, I am so that person, who even organizes her lists!)
Because this is a fun project, I am allowing wiggle room with some of the goals. And so far, this list and this whole project idea have been quite wonderful! I would recommend it to anyone:)

start the birthyear with the 29 gifts challenge (Day 1- April 28th 2014)
host a dinner party to welcome in one of the seasons (Fall is my favorite)
go on a cruise
celebrate 30 in a BIG way
celebrate 30 in a quiet way
*travel to 5 places that I've never been before (3 down and 2 to go!)
sleep under the stars
watch a full sunrise and full sunset from the beach
finish reading Julie and Julia, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, Outliers, and Strength to Love
*cook or bake 24  "new to me" recipes (2 a month hopefully) (as of today I am at 12!)
take a surprise visit home to see my parents
*maintain my weight, below a "magic" number (Gotta get my motivation back on track)
plan a trip just for the sister and I
read through the New Testament
clean out my email ( all 3 accounts)
buy a pedometer and track my steps
adopt a classroom for a school year (I am not sure what this would entail..but any interested teacher friends, just ask, and maybe we could work something out)
update my scrapbook
use the scanner I got and really organize old memories, pictures and papers

go to a concert
start a personal prayer warrior project (daily, dedicated and specific prayer time)
sit down and write family history (Stewart and Miles)
incorporate yoga weekly, or twice a month
take piano lessons ( I have been wanting to do this for over 10 years)
go sailing
swim/feed dolphins
*get serious about my finances ( I am thinking Financial Peace University) (January 2015)
*send 30 cards to our military and the sick and shut-in (use church bulletins to help with this )
try horseback riding again
end the birthyear with the 29 gifts challenge (Day 1 Cycle 2- April 28th 2015)

Sunday, October 12, 2014

30 day journaling project- Day 3

The prompt is simple...A book you love.
Hahaha, except I love a lot of books! But, I will narrow it down to my absolute favorite story, a tale that I have read and reread probably a hundred times.

A hint you say? Ok, here is a quote “And to all this she must yet add something more substantial, in the improvement of her mind by extensive reading.”
Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice 

Ahhhh yes, Pride and Prejudice. I wish I could remember the first time that I read this classic treasure. It was somewhere between 5th and 7th grade. I know, that is not a very good estimate, but I feel like it has been a book that I have always enjoyed reading. No matter, at my current age of 29, I can still say that this story has been my favorite now for years. It seems to only get better with age, and I just find it both comforting and pleaseing (a word we don't use so often anymore).

I love the elements of family life in the story of the 5 Bennett sisters. I grew up in a house with 1 sister, so I get the feminine vibe. I love the strong, sometimes wrong, Elizabeth Bennett. She is all that encompasses strength in literature, to me. I would go so far as to say I would name my maybe future daughter Elizabeth, I just love her character that much!

I love the old English setting and time of history. Then of course you have the wide array of personality types displayed. There is the ridiculous, the studious, the romantic, etc. The Darcy and Elizabeth, developing love story, is perfection to me.

All in all, I don't think I will ever, ever love a book as much as Pride and Prejudice!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Watching out for Envy

                                                                         (from here)
Envy is crafty isn't it? I can say that because I caught myself the other day, and I was even surprised by the small thoughts that crept into a perfectly normal day.

29 has been a wonderful year! I have been blessed and seen growth in myself that makes me hopeful for what lies ahead. I love the home that I get to share with one of my best friends. I love the job that I have where I get to work with students and families (and paperowrk of course!). I am settling in at the church that will prayerfully become my church home. It is my favorite season, and I know life will be wonderfully great between now and New Year's 2015.

And yet, envy would still find a small opening. And I am pretty self-aware, so I know this is not just a Sabrina thing, it is a human nature thing.

With all of the blessings in my life, I saw something and was both excited and yet, a part of me wanted it for myself. The interesting part is, I know I was a late-bloomer, focused on my school and career for a long, long time. That Sabrina was great, but she was not ready to be a wife, mother, or homeowner. Envy makes you forget that though, it clouds the picture and makes you think that if you had the gift that another has been given, that you would somehow enjoy it more, or cherish it differently. Envy makes you ask...."Why not me?".

This bout of feelings, got me to thinking. Thinking about being a 29 year old woman in the American South in 2014. I thought of my own mother and the milestones of her life, I thought of my peers and the milestones in their lives. And then I took a very deep breath. In and out, and I refocused myself. Everyone refocuses differently, and this time I thought of the reminders in the Bible to be thankful, and the Old Testament commands to "not covet".

Breathing and slowing down my mind helped me to be purposeful. I am in control of my thoughts, and mine needed a booster shot to get back on track. Thankfully, all is well! I have everything that I need in life, and much of what I want and desire. I know what truly matters, and that it cannot be contained in a house, mate, or child (though I carefully look forward to those blessings at the right time for me).

My life is just exactly as it should be. I am at peace with that thought, thankful for my opportunities, and continually ready for what lies ahead!


Sunday, September 14, 2014

30 day journaling project- Day 2

Something you feel strongly about....

Hmmmm, where to start? I have a pretty passionate personality, and feel strongly about quite a lot of things. I think I will focus on children though, since they are an extra special part of my life.

It is difficult for me to handle when adults make horrible decisions that affect children. This usually, is their parents, but can be a host of other people.

I feel strongly, when politicians whose children never even went to public school, make money based decisions that affect millions of children in this country who attend their local public schools.

I feel strongly about adults who openly cuss in front of children or worse at their children, it's as if they don't get it, just how much kids learn from their environment, that then has to be unlearned later in life. And they don't get that angry discipline that includes cussing at a child should not be an option. Protect the innocence of your babies!

I still get confused about the families who are waiting for children, and those who have children but don't care for their needs. Leaving children in hot cars, letting your children spend all day in front of a screen, bringing children along for the ride of not so great decisions that will mature them before it is their time.

I get so sad for the broken families and the confusion and anger and betrayal that our population of children are starting to see as normal. I wish I could let the parents who have left their duty as parents, see the face of their children. Hear the questions, and the earnest wishes for families to be reconnected. Sigh, it is a troubling problem. 

I always go back to the idea that no child ever asked to be here. That was the choice of adults. And so when children suffer, it just swirls up these feelings inside me. It is why I do what I do. Someone has to listen and advocate for our children. Someone has to just be there for our kids as they work their resilient way through the ups and down of life. 

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Fresh

New, bright, dawn, vibrant, awesome.
With my earlybird morning ways, the sunrise and I are good friends. It gives me peace to actually see a new day dawning. Dark night skies gently lightening up to more pastel tones. I tell you, the soft pink, orange, blue, and purple of daybreak.....absolute perfection!

Life is this concoction of fresh and routine. Fresh moments, mixed into the routines of the day to day.
I love the routines of life, the days, weeks, months, and years that are filled with the things that I am used to. But yet, I grow through the fresh experiences. I blossom through new people, places, and ideas that make me ponder and sometimes make adjustments.

I am working in a quaint little school, that is mellow and wonderful. And sometimes I feel like this rushing, quick, not mellow woman. However, this is the season for more mellow in my life. I have been planning and being busy since my teens. Loving being gone and surrounded my people. 29 has come and it keeps showing me that there is another way. A season of quiet nights, and tasks that don't get completed. A season of not being my own worst enemy. Not stacking the expectations impossibly high and then berating myself for constantly falling short.

29 feels like such a fragile age. I have moments when I react like 19 year old Sabrina, and moments of great maturity where I react, as I hope 39 year old Sabrina will react! It's kinda something else actually. Something that both encourages me and also frustrates me at the same time. How can I still be that girl and yet be the woman I will become?

I'm giddy about fresh moments, that if I will let them, can lead to fresh days, weeks, and months.
I'm learning to not rush through the fresh times, but let them last as long as they are meant.
I'm realigning my outer self with my true inner self, and admitting the gifts and the flaws.
I'm content and smiling and so very thankful for the blessings that are mine, not deserved but always appreciated!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Desires of the Heart

“Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for.”
Epicurus

I am here! I have had a wonderful transition back to Florida. I feel so much peace being back home, and establishing a new home for myself. Prayers have been answered in great ways, and it is true that "my cup runneth over". I don't ever want to forget the path that led me back here and this excitement about new opportunities.

I love the title of this post because it is something every single person has. Those private, very personal desires of the heart. And in an age where we share so much, I think it is really more important to remember that everyone has things that they don't share. Wishes, thoughts and desires that never leave the recesses of our hearts and minds.

I am not sure about you, maybe you have not checked in with yourself lately, but in the middle of hectic life, I would say to find some quiet time and ponder what is it that you guard carefully and closely. What ideas, and dreams do you want and work for, yet don't blast aloud to any listening ear. I think that these desires of the heart are strong. They can be some mighty motivators, and so many times they are that spark, that twinkle in your eyes that hints of hidden depths and untapped potential. 

Lately, I have enjoyed the excitement of realizing that this life is ALWAYS going to give you more than you planned. And I do mean ALWAYS. Yet, I am blessed to say that it all works out for good. Not perfect, mind you, but definitely good, and I thank God for that! You know I used to see things simply, if it made you cry or doubt or frown or dig in deep and work, well then those were difficult situaitons and I didn't want to be around those. I wanted to write my life story with as few of those moments as possible. And I was so naive, because I didn't realize that in the story of this here life of Sabrina, those are the exact times that made me a better person. And I wanted to skip over them and avoid them!

I am grateful for time to work it out and grow and change. I am thankful for time to hurt and heal and hunger and thirst and be filled and then be overflowing with abundance. I am content with the ups and down and the things that are not sure now, but will be sure in time.

29 is shaping up to be quite an amazing year! My future is continuing to morph and give me peeks and glances at new possibilities. I am trying to be aware and yet humble. Loving and also resilient. I am walking this path of being everything I have always been, and yet also, everything that I have the possibility of being. Yeah, and that is turning out to be just as interesting as it sounds!