When I saw the April edition of Educational Leadership, with my article "Improving Teaching, One Conversation at a Time" (should be available in the next week or so for the general public), I was over the moon. After all, ASCD's monthly publication is read by so many teachers and teacher leaders around the world. I did a little happy dance when ASCD sent me the advance copies and I was able to read (and, yes, smell....those of you who know me well know I am a book/magazine sniffer and ASCD has some pretty awesome paper and ink on which they print their publications) the article alongside their great graphics.
Talking about what might help teachers grow is one of my life's passions. Helping other administrators motivate and inspire teachers is yet another passion.
But, in addition to getting books and articles published, there are some pretty simple things in life that really get me jazzed, as well. Here is a short list, certainly not exhaustive, and in no particular order (anyone recognize the "in no particular order" as Ryan Seacrest's American Idol words? No? Heavy sigh.)...
1. Hiking a piece of the Appalachian Trail with dear friends, Jil and Angelle, who appreciate the beauty and serenity of a walk in the woods. For a great read on hiking the AT, try Bill Bryson's book. I've walked pieces of the AT in Georgia, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and hope to do more of it one day.
2. Making par on a hole on the golf course, even though I am still a novice (and by novice, I mean: I try and try to get better, but my game is the illustration for the word "inconsistent" in Webster's great book of words). Maybe part of the charm of this game is that it usually consists of uninterrupted time with my dear, patient husband.
3. Getting together with friends and family for a meal and conversation. When the meal takes place at a Mexican restaurant in San Antonio, TX, that adds fuel to the fun, but I am flexible (Dave just laughed outloud at my liberal interpretation of the word "flexible".) What could be better than doubling over in laughter or sharing a moment of quiet weeping for a shared loss of moms with dear friends, after all?
What is it, for you? What gets you happy? Raucous comedy? The smell of the desert after a good rain? The scent of mountain laurel in the summertime? Watching a puppy attempt to get an older dog to engage in play?
Whatever it is that gives you happiness, may you find it today. And, just for today, remember to make note of how nice it is to appreciate the big things and the little things in our lives that bring us joy.