Great outlook! Our experiences creating meaning for our lives. The meaning we make tends to determine the path that unfolds before us.
School starts back up tomorrow and I’m filled with both excitement and dread. It’s nice to be able to start over, introduce new elements to the curriculum, tweak stuff that worked, lose what didn’t. At the same time, I have a rough idea of what I’m teaching throughout the year and it’s daunting to see the next nine months laid out like that. I always have this fear that I’m going to mess it up somehow. As much as teachers are scrutinized by the public, I think we scrutinize ourselves much more harshly and regularly. I want to do a good job and get the students interested. And for the students who by 9th grade have already decided they don’t care about school, well, I just want to get them to try. I’m tired. I’m going to read and then go to bed. In the immortal words of Joseph Campbell, “Follow your bliss”. Goodnight folks.
Saturday is my “cheat day” on the slow carb diet outlined in Tim Ferris’ “4 Hour Body”. Trying a new church in the morning, so the alarm will sound early. Lots of delicious food today. Eggs, hash browns, and biscuits for breakfast, usual combo of beans, veggies, and chicken for lunch, and Peanut Sesame Noodles for dinner. My wife and daughter made chocolate & peanut butter chip cookies for a treat. This program is working out well. Seeing positive results. Didn’t do any writing today. Working through my third short story. Watching Bojack Horseman. I should get to sleep. Enjoying Fixed Gear Red American Ale. Goodnight.
An afFAIR to Remember
Yesterday marked our inaugural visit to the Minnesota State Fair, despite living in Minnesota since 2012. In our first summer out here, Grizz took it upon himself to bark incessantly whenever we left the house and I had not discovered a solution, so we opted to stay home. Last summer marked huge transitions as we moved and welcomed our second daughter right around the same time. And after starting work, settling the house, and accommodating an infant into our lives, the fair fell low on the priority list. But this year, we made it happen.
The alarms began blaring at five, and we quickly assembled ourselves for departure, leaving just after 7:00. Slogging our way through morning commute traffic on US-HWY 10 proved to be the most arduous leg of our journey. My usual traffic-induced grumpiness filled the car with tension, but once we pulled into the lot and got out, anxieties and stress dissipated. The fair is tremendous, with a variety of buildings housing different aspects of Minnesotan life. Plopped in between were all manners of vendors, food stands, shops, and rides. The girls enjoyed the animal birthing center where they were able to pet piglets and see other newborn animals. We all found delight in $1 bottomless cups of chocolate and/or white milk before chowing down on fair french fries. There were a lot of tempting foods, but we showed surprising restraint, limiting ourselves to the fries, and a deep fried apple pie turnover w/ vanilla ice cream. These were all split amongst the four of us. I got to do some rides with our eldest daughter. She had her heart set on the carousel, but before she galloped on the pink-maned, white horse, she and I rode Bob’s Toboggans. She loved it! It was her first bigger kid ride. We treated her to some cotton candy later on. The day was tremendous but exhausting, and I developed a new-found respect for my mom for her commitment to giving the fair or amusement ride experience to me and my sister. There’s a lot of planning and there’s a lot to keep together when you finally get to the fair. We would save aluminum cans all year to help pay for the fair, and we’d ride rides all day. At the end of the day, we’d ask our mom if we could stay to see the lights come on, and she’d usually oblige, even though she must have been tired. It’s worth it though. I’m glad that my wife and I were able to bring our girls.