Around here we have been enjoying and eventually missing summer as we know it. I suppose I could have been writing about all the wonderful things we have been doing--going to the Oregon State Fair, eating apple crisp at Applebee's, meeting new people at the neighborhood block party--but that would involve me sitting at the computer instead of, you know, NOT sitting at the computer. It's not as though I didn't want to write about it, but as I considered spending those extra evenings with Jason before he started inservice at school or spending those extra evenings blogging, there was really no comparison.
Sure, it meant that instead of blogging I decided to snuggle up on the couch with Jason and sit through an entire episode of CSI: Miami and listen to Horatio say profound things like, "Turns out this was a party to die for." Oh, H! Somewhere there has to be a better script for you. I even watched a few minutes of The Unit...before I eventually ran screaming from the room. (It's not the military stuff that bothers me, it's all the drama in the personal lives. It's all the unsupportive husbands who, while probably representing some real life stuff, spend their first evening back from a mission smoking cigars with their buddies instead of AT HOME with their WIVES for PETE'S SAKE!....anyway....) I can sit through a little bad television if it means a few extra moments with Jason.
So, yes, Jason has gone back to work. There has been indeed much crying and asking of "Where's daddy? Where's daddy?" while wandering forlornly around the house. That transition back to school starting is a rough one, but at least we had him home for a couple months. That's worth a lot. Jason is teaching 6th graders this year, an all-time young age for him. He's a bit nervous about that since he always thought that 7th graders were young, let alone six graders who are still essentially elementary school kids, prone to random hugging and telling you they love you. Hopefully it's just a temporary thing, and next year he'll be back to 7th and 8th graders. At least, he's coaching high school soccer, so he gets to hang out with the "big kids" for a few hours after school.
As for me, well, I started classes yesterday. This semester I'll be teaching two classes of Fundamentals of Speech, aka CO102, two days a week. I almost started to get those first day of school nerves, before I remembered that, oh yeah, I've done this before. Even though I have teaching friends who tell me they always get nervous on the first day of school, I seem to have a very small reserve of arrogance tucked away in my pysche for just such occasions as these. I just think, "I totally know what I'm talking about, so what's to be nervous about?" Also, I find myself way more funny than my students do, so I never worry about people laughing at my joke because hey! I'm laughing at my jokes and that just seems to make all the difference.
Aside from my corny jokes, I had my syllabus, I had my Power Point presentation (complete with embedded film clip!), and I had the room temperature set at a chilly 65 degrees so they couldn't fall asleep. I admit towards the end of class a few students had blue lips, and probably some of the kids were taking notes just to keep their hands warm. Even those upperclassmen guys in the back row asked if they could open the door to get some warm air in the room. But 75 minutes later, my students were looking as alert as ever and I consider that a warm--er, cool--success.
Back to school, back to school. The smell of dry erase markers, the hum of computers, the shuffle of hand outs. Ah, such bittersweetness.