Archives for December 2010

Zazzle’s New Year’s Sale

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 Zazzle’s New Year’s Sale 

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Zazzle is celebrating 2011 with a New Year’s Sale. Take advantage of 20.11% off all orders for a limited time only! Please see details below and make sure to promote on your sites.

20.11% Off All Orders at Zazzle’s New Year’s Sale w/code 2011NEWYEARS
Valid 12/30 – 1/06/11

 

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Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

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RecipeLion New Year’s Eve Ideas

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If you’re still looking for ideas for tonight’s festivities, or if you just like getting free recipes, check this out:
Start the year off right with RecipeLion’s latest eBook,
14 New Year’s Eve party ideas, recipes, drinks and decorations.  Go here to sign up!


**This post may contain affiliate links. This means that if you click/purchase/sign up for this offer, I may receive a small amount of compensation for it.**

Follow Me on Pinterest

Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

Lessons Learned and Reflections Made for 2010

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Check out my Lessons Learned and Reflections Made for 2010, on my personal blog.   This is a yearly tradition I began about 7 years ago, and it’s sparked quite a few interesting discussions over time.


I’d love to hear y’alls thoughts, and any lessons or reflections you care to share for 2010.


Happy New Year’s y’all!  May 2011 hold wonder, excitement, and a few frugal lessons for you.  :o)
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Follow Me on Pinterest

Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

Daily Save – Hydrasip $18 for $40 worth of eco-friendly h2o bottles PLUS bonus saves from ! Butler Bag, The Healing Tree, Atlanta Rocks Indoor Climbing Gym, ATL Fitness, and Bounce-U

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Here is the Daily Save from Eversave, along with some cool bonus saves.  Act soon, as these deals won’t last long!  :o)  




    

      Today’s Save: Hydrasip

Today’s Save:$18 for $40 worth of eco-friendly water bottles from Hydrasip.com  Go here for offer.

Expires 02:59 AM – Jan 03, 2011

    



    

      Bonus Save: Bounce-U

Today’s Save: $19.95 for five jumper passes at Bounce-U in Kennesaw ($40 value)  Go here for offer.

Expires 11:59 PM – Jan 03, 2011

    



    

      Bonus Save: ATL Fitness

Today’s Save: $25 for 90 days of unlimited gym access and tanning at ATL Fitness ($165 value)  Go here for offer.

Expires 11:59 PM – Jan 01, 2011

    



    

      Bonus Save: Atlanta Rocks! Indoor Climbing Gym

Today’s Save: $60 for a two-hour introductory rock climbing class and a one-month membership to Atlanta Rocks! Indoor Climbing Gym ($132+ value)  Go here for offer.

Expires 11:59 PM – Dec 31, 2010

    



    

      Bonus Save: The Healing Tree

Today’s Save:$15 for $30 worth of all-natural skin products from HealingTreeNaturals.com  Go here for offer.

Expires 02:59 AM – Jan 02, 2011

    



    

      Bonus Save: Butler Bag

Today’s Save:$30 for $75 worth of compartmentalized handbags, totes and clutches from Butlerbag.com  Go here for offer.

Expires 02:59 AM – Jan 01, 2011

  

Follow Me on Pinterest

Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

Lessons Learned and Reflections Made for 2010

**This post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**



Lessons Learned and Reflections Made for 2010
2010 was a passionate year for me. Rather, it was a year in which I actively pursued my passions, or rekindled or maintained the things about which I have long been passionate. In February, armed with a stack of resumes and a fiery red-head’s legs loyally clamped to my hip, I set about to re-enter the workforce, pursuing an old flame of mine: working with the Little Ones. Through a long process, much hand-wringing, a few interviews here and there, and turning down job offers that simply were not right for myself or my family at the time, I found myself working at my old church. The church where my passion for the Little Ones all began. I have yet to be disappointed, and continue to marvel that I am -once again- getting paid to do something I love doing!
After much prodding by friends and family, I also found myself starting up a blog, so that I could share another of my passions: frugality. Thus, Atlanta’s Frugal Mom came to be. Though the blog is still very much still in it’s fledgling stages, it has become a small source of joy and inspiration.
I’ve also began a staunch passion to campaign against celebrating any further birthdays. Well, to be fair, I’ll take the birthday and any cake that may accompany it, but can I leave off the “one year older” thing? I digress; I won’t rehash previous thoughts here on turning 30
Perhaps my greatest passion this year continues to be that of motherhood. Truly, it is a role I was born to take on! Hubs and I have been amazingly blessed with a sweet, curious, highly energetic daughter; an enigmatic blessing whose enormous proportion is not lost on us. The Tot continues to be a source of delight, giggles and smiles– even with the Twos making special early appearances here and there.
Passion aside, I think it’ time to alter my yearly tradition. It seems more appropriate to balance reflections of the past year, with dreams, hopes, and resolutions for the next year to come. Thus, without further adieu….
2010 Reflections
  1. There’s nothing like ten two-year-olds, in all their innocence, honesty, and spontaneity, to keep you grounded! Teaching preschool, while slightly taxing at times, has been an amazing experience for me thus far; I feel that this is what I’m meant to do at this point in my life.
  2. Blogging is addictive, rewarding, and can end up being as much, or as little, work as you want -or allow it- to be.
  3. Toddler hood is a true test of parents’ patience.
  4. Good things come to those who wait. There are certain things in life for which you simply cannot plan, no matter how much you try. Again, patience is a virtue.
  5. Taking off” from the gym for a few weeks is a bad idea. A really, really bad idea.
  6. …but having childcare at the gym is a Godsend! (I hope the Kid Zone at the JCC is prepared for a romping-stomping-redheaded-tornado come January!)
  7. Quality over quantity – everytime!
  8. There are very few dishes in to which you cannot put spinach.
2011 Resolutions
  1. To live the next 365 days to their fullest, with my wonderfully amazing family along for the ride. (Sappy, I know; but I hope putting it in writing serves as a reminder to not waste a single day away.)
  2. The gym: hit it daily. Or at least drop a few pounds… Whatever.
  3. Get -and then maintain!- some sense of organization for the daily grind.
  4. Learn to sew.
  5. Drink more water. Drink less soda. This will greatly help with resolution #2. N’duh!
  6. Write more! To daughter, for personal reflection, and for the big, bad blogosphere to devour!
  7. Eat more chicken… Wait, that’s a Chik-fil-a ad. Nevermind. There is no number seven….
    I resolve only a handful of things for the year, but hope to attain these goals. What goals and aspirations do you have for the coming new year?
I wish you all a happy, healthy, and prosperous new year. May the final moments of 2010 prove well for you, and may you marvel daily at the wonders ahead for you in 2011.
P.S.  You’re very welcome to take a peek at Lessons Learned from years past.
Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

Lessons Learned Archive

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Lessons learned from years past:
The Archive
The tradition began many years ago, back when I emailed them to friends and family. For this archive, I simply copied and pasted, deleting any phone numbers I had attached to my signature at the time, but preserved the names and quotations accompanying. At the very least, it was neat for me to see my evolution over time. :o)
2005 (must not have learned much in ’05?)
Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

Lessons Learned in 2006

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Okay folks, it’s that time of the year again. For those new to my inner circle, I annually compile a list of important tidbits -life lessons, if you will- that I have picked up along the way each year. (And for those of you on MySpace, you will be receiving this through a bulletin as well… twice the joy, right?) I find this more enjoyable than making new year’s resolutions, since I marvel in seeing what others have learned during the year. So, I will list below what I’ve learned, and you are welcome to read, make your own list of things you’ve learned (and -my lord!- it certainly doesn’t need to be as long-winded as mine), and feel free to share with your friends and family. In years past, this has sparked some interesting discussions amongst my friends, some of whom have never met, except for being on the same “sent to” list on my emails.

Without further ado, here’s what I have learned in the year 2006:

  1. All children need to be hugged. Especially the ones you least want to hug. I think I post this one every year, but each year I find renewed purpose in stating this!
  2. I have some of the best damn colleagues around. I am truly blessed. Okay, more of a statement than a lesson, but…
  3. Buying a house is hard, but very rewarding work. Selling a house is a bitch. Anyone want to buy a lovely home in Lilburn??
  4. Weddings are a wonderful memory. Unfortunantly, the day is never long enough, no matter how late you and your guests stay up and party…
  5. Honeymoons are like a fairy tale. They must always end, but leave lasting impressions and spark fond feelings and memories.
  6. For Christmas this year, one of my students presented me with a tiny wrapped package with a big bow, and she was dying for me to open it. It turned out to be a little notepad shaped like a flower, with lots of glitter on it, hooked to a key chain. And she had already written her name on the inside of it. I later found out that she had not given any of her other teachers a gift, but she wanted me to have something, so she very likely looked around her room the day before the break, and found this little notepad -which still, by the way, had the pricetag on it. This is a child that I talk to like an adult, because even though she has some terrible emotional and behavioral problems, she is rather intelligent (IQ in the 130s), and I have shown her nothing but respect in the two years since I’ve known her. The teacher next door to me has spoken on my wonderful repoire with this little girl. I was almost in tears when I fully realized the significance of her tiny gift. Soooo…the lesson? Always treat people with respect, no matter what.
  7. There is nothing in the world as exhilarating as marrying your best friend, and knowing that the two of you were meant to be together. Again, I am truly blessed.
  8. I am dreadfully terrible about staying in touch with my friends. Luckily, through handy-dandy things like MySpaceLand, textmessaging, and good ol’ fashioned email, I am able to somewhat salvage my ability to stay in touch with you all. (And if I don’t, please know that you’re constantly on my mind!)
  9. I always think of the things I need to do at the most inconvenient times. That ever-growing to-do list just gets longer and longer while driving in the car, in the shower, or drifting off to sleep.
  10. Advisors can be your worst enemy. Particularly when they seem to be rather incompetent, and hand out their work to others. But ultimately passing your research project and obtaining your degree is perhaps the sweetest revenge. 😉

That’s it. I think I’m done for the year. It has been another life-changing, highly engaging year, and I look forward to what 2007 has in store for us all. I wish you all a safe, happy, healthy, and all-around wonderful new year. May you find countless moments to take your breath away.

Cheers!

Barbara Burns 

“Marge, it’s vallet.  Maybe for once, someone will call me ‘sir’ without adding, ‘you’re making a scene'”  – Homer Simpson

Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

Lessons Learned in 2007

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So as 2008 starts to rapidly roll forward, it is time that I get on in sharing my Lessons from 2007.  I encourage you all to share with me, and other friends and family, what you have learned the past twelve months as well.

1.  First, I must open with the chilling realization that no one is safe.  Period.  In recent headlines, the citizens of Georgia have see an apparently charismatic, lovely young lady go from missing to dead to tortured and decapitated by a crazy old man.  Then, on a more personal note, I watched as a young girl I went to high school was found lifeless at the bottom of a lake (pond?) where she was last seen jogging with her dog in Athens.  Details still unfolding.  And, still very tragically, I cannot forget or dismiss that a friend of mine lost her brother to the inexplicable tragedy at Virginia Tech.  She and her family are turning that mess into a forum for gun control reform, and rightly so.  The point of all this is that, within our cozy little worlds, we can be jolted into terror and tragedy unknown; whether it be to us personally, or to a loved one of someone we know.  Regardless, we must never -to paraphrase a country song,- “take one single breath for granted.”

2.  Work is work.  It’s not supposed to be something we can effortlessly glide through, nor something which we can do without.  I find it oddly comforting and frustrating that my job has constantly thrown wrenches in my best laid plans for my students.  I have had to continuously be on my toes.  Perhaps it keeps me awake and alert.  Or perhaps it’s part of what draws me to the Mexican restaurant down the street each week for the chips, dip, delicious food, and the big mug of beer.

3.  Which leads me to the 3rd lesson: routine.  I love my and my husband’s routines.  We have our “date nights” that I greatly look forward to.  Okay, so I didn’t “learn” this in the past year; I’ve known this since we started dating.  However, my appreciation for these little things grows and grows with each little stressor in our lives.

4.  Finding your dream home is amazing.  Filling it with 30-years worth of furniture (thanks to your in-laws flying south) can be both humbling and overwhelming.  It is neat to know that we have certain pieces of furniture that Tim and his family used years and years ago, and to think of the history behind it.  It is sad, however, to think about WHY we have it, and why it’s not with his parents anymore.  The comfort lies in knowing that they will frequently be here to visit us, any future grandkids, and all their old stuff for MANY MANY years.

5.  God Bless Craig’s List!

6.  I miss my friends at Magill.  I knew before I left my last school that they were a special group of people with whom to work, and I knew finding another group that clicked like that would be extremely rare.  While I am reaching out and making strides at my current school, I still miss the personalities and the friendships I had there.  Leaving that school was one of the hardest things I had to do, but I simply knew I couldn’t commute for a solid hour each day.  Which leads wonderfully to …..

7.  Having a 13 minute commute kicks ass!  I still get up as early as I did last year, and still don’t get home most days until late (like last year).  But there is something wonderful about knowing that I am 6.9 miles away from work.  That is a luxury to which I have not been previously accustomed.

8.  I am perhaps unique and lucky to have such both wonderful in-laws and parents.  They are amazingly wonderful people, and I’m priveledged to get along with all of them, and have the utmost respect for them.  Even my dad is a good egg sometimes.  😉

9.  Some times those who least expect it have the strongest “Mom genes” (not to be confused with Mom Jeans).  I have watched a good friend of mine transform into a hopelessly devoted mother this year, through the pregnancy and the first few months with her son, whom I’m still DYING to meet!  Years ago, I recall her declaring that she’ll “deal with the kids when they’re old enough to talk and stuff”, and now she can’t wait for her 2nd.  😉  I have seen several wonderful women go through this in the past few years, and they have turned out to be amazing mothers, with beautiful children.

9.  I’ll be thankful come May that today wasn’t a “snow day”, or at least that’s what I keep telling myself.

Okay, folks, that’s my two cents worth.  I look forward to hearing from you all about what 2007 held in store for you all.  Take care, and (better late than never) happy 2008!  🙂

 
Barbara Burns 

“Education is not the filling of a bucket, but the lighting of a fire.”  – W.B. Yeats

There is a brilliant child locked inside every student.”  – Marva Collins
Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

Lessons Learned in 2008

**This post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**



Believe it or not, I began this edition in July…  There were many little tidbits that I knew I wanted to capture before I forgot them!  So, here we go, Lessons Learned in 2008:

1)  I’ve worked with soo many kids over the years that never fit neatly into any one “label” or category.  He or she may display strong characteristic of this or that label or diagnosis, but doesn’t quite fit the full definitional criteria.  Therefore, I have learned that a label is just that: a label.  Instead of treating someone based on the label, it is better to treat the person with which we are working.  (Actually, I learned this MANY MANY years ago from my amazing mentor during my undergrad days.  It’s just been so greatly reinforced lately, that it’s worth adding to the Lessons List.)

2)  I believe my friend Lauren said this one best, if you ever want to make God laugh, just tell him your plans.  As much as I am a PLANNER, there are just so many things that are simply out of our control.  Therefore, you can make plans, but must be flexible and willing to roll with the changes. 

3)  Alaska is a BEAUTIFUL, beautiful place.  I truly hope that it remains the last frontier.  If you ever have the opportunity to see the land, DO IT!

4)  ***Males, you DON’T want to read this one.  Just skip straight to number five NOW!****  When you’re trying to have a baby, and you know it’s close to That Time of the Month, you dread having to go to the restroom, for fear of disappointment.  And even AFTER you’ve taken two pregnancy tests -confirming that you are indeed preggo- it’s hard to understand that you’re period isn’t coming, so you’ll still *expect* it when you go to the restroom for a few days.  That, too, will subside with time.

5)  If you ever want to go to the beach, but can’t get away, put on The Beach Boys.  They’re like a barbershop quartet, with guitars.  They will instantly take you to a warm place, with sand and a cold drink.  ;o)

6) If you ever meet a mother who says she had an easy pregancy, AND/OR retained her figure instantly, SLAP HER!  Consider it a personal favor for yours truly.

7) As an expectant mother, I cannot read enough about prenancy or babies.  I cannot help but stare in awe at babies I see.  I have even become more motherly towards our good ol’ dog, Payton.  And I thought that teaching was a lifestyle!  Hello motherhood!  :o)

8)  It’s okay to have one room in the house that you just never get as organized as you want it to be.  No matter how much it bugs you, sometimes you have to just LET IT GO.  (I know, this is information is shocking to many of you — it still shocks me.)

9)  There truly is NEVER enough time in the day, in the week, month, etc. to get everything done.  And that’s okay.  Just do what you can, prioritize when you need to, ask for help when needed, and just enjoy the time that you have. 

10) July 15th is a day I will never forget for as long as I live.  It’s the day I went in for my lasik surgery pre-op.  It’s also the very day I realized I wouldn’t be able to have the surgery for quite some time.  I had an even better medical condition coming my way.  That was the very day that I took The Test, and discovered that Tim and I were going to become parents.  …okay, no lesson there, just a day I now have ingrained in my mind permanently.  (Along with those precious ultrasounds during which we got to “meet” our little girl.  …words simply cannot describe seeing that little image moving around, knowing that she was growing in me!)  I intend to enjoy the ride.

11) My life will never be the same again.  And I am absolutely okay with that.  I actually look forward to it: the very highs and the very lows that encompass parenthood.  I am not niave enough to believe that this little girl will always be a joy, or even easy, but I greatly anticipate watching her grow and raising her to be a responsible, compassionate citizen.

12) Once you go touchscreen, you never want to go back, be it phone, navigation or -gasp!- computer!

13) Similar to my comments in #8: Although I still truly believe that teaching is a lifestyle (beyond “just” a job, or even a career), there comes a time when you have to step back and let some things go.  One simply cannot work 10-12 hours a day, every weekday, plus weekends, and feel balanced or whole.  You cannot let a job consume you.  Don’t get me wrong — I LOVE the actual teaching and working with my students.  But the paperwork, planning, and politics on top of that are for the birds!  Welcome to teaching in the NCLB era!

14)  I fully understand the expression “don’t wish your life away”.  As a planner, I have always anticipated the next big milestone, making such comments as “only xx more days until [insert any significant day/moment/event]”.  While it’s fine to keep your eyes set on upcoming events, you have to live your life each day, and not just try and build for what may come.  You never know what the next week, day, hour, or even minute can bring; and what you expected to happen can change on a dime.  Be prepared to roll with the punches, and be flexible with the moment.  So, do not wish your life away!  …anyone care to count the number of cliches loaded into this one??

15) Pregnancy and its impeding motherhood change your life drastically, and forever.  Aside from the physical signs (STRETCHING ligaments are a killer!!) and visual cues (I look like a tank these days!!), my way of looking at things has altered permanently.  For example, while at a restaurant or ANY dept. store, I now note the places whose facilities have a changing table.  I’ve always been a germaphobe and have always thougth about public places and how I would handle them when I have kids, but I now keenly note who has facilities that are “kid-friendly”.  I also now look at song lyrics, television, and movies drastically different.  I’ve always looked at the media and thought, would I want my children to be exposed to this?  (More often than not, the answer was an astounding “no”.)  However, now I look even closer and reflect on if I would want my DAUGHTER to be exposed to, or influenced by, the messages this song/episode/movie presents.  Again, mostly, the answer is “no”. 

…I wonder if my little girl will grow up to be opinionated at all???  ;o)

16) If you’re looking to “rest” during a break, never, NEVER do a complete, simultaneous overhaul of 2 bathrooms, particularly while pregnant!  It’s not fun to have to climb stairs EVERY time nature calls!  And you know it’s killing me to look at the “mess” accumulating in the meantime…

17) Life is never short of miracles; the last seven months have been proof of that.  However, while I am reflecting and lamenting on the joys of this last year, and the wonders that lie ahead for me and my family, I am reminded that life is absolutely precious and fleeting.  A family I’ve grown up with is currently struggling with an impending decision they must make in a few days.  I do not envy them.  I can only pray for them and keep them in my thoughts, and let them know that myself and my family are there for them, in whatever capacity they need. 

And with that, I close my thoughts for 2008.  I’m sure 2009 won’t be as long-winded, as I will likely have less time to sit, ponder, and type!  I can’t wait!  So, to all of you reading this, I wish you a very happy new year.  I hope 2009 holds wonderful excitement in store for each one of you.  You wouldn’t have received this message if you weren’t, in some way, an important person in my life.  If you wish to write back, sharing your “lessons”, I look forward to reading them.  If not, I won’t hold it against you …not too much!  ;o)  Happy 2009 everyone!

 
Barbara Burns 
“Education is not the filling of a bucket, but the lighting of a fire.”  – W.B. Yeats
There is a brilliant child locked inside every student.”  – Marva Collins
Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

**Remember, y'all, this post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**

Lessons Learned in 2004

**This post may contain affiliate links. I receive a small amount of compensation when you purchase from my links, which I"ll totally blow on waffle fries and sweet tea, y'all!**



Lessons Learned in 2004
I had such meaningful responses from this last year, so much so that I felt compelled to start forming my thoughts for this exercise in October!!  (Unfortunately, between classes, exams, and the holidays, I haven’t had a chance to sit down and FINISH this until a few days into the New Year.)  I want to keep this tradition going, so feel free to respond either just to me, or simply to those with whom you choose.  (Start your OWN tradition!!)
I must begin by stating that, once again, in the span of a year, my life has drastically been altered – and for the better!!  Specifically, in the span of about a week, my life was changed permanently!  Around the middle of March on a Thursday, the job that I had poured my heart in to for over a year was cruelly and abruptly ripped away from me.  This was mainly due to poor communication skills amongst those above me.  This left me in a panic that weekend.  I wasn’t sure what my next step was going to be.  Much was left up in the air.  Furthermore, the humiliation of being “demoted” was too much to bear.  I was ready to leave the place all together, even if it meant a great financial burden.  However, my life changed for the better that following Monday morning.  I received my acceptance letter from the graduate school at UGA.  Wow!  This was actually quite an accomplishment, considering the many other folks who received rejection letters around that time.  Out of this acceptance letter, a celebration dinner was generated.  Thus, I met the most incredible man, with whom I now know I will spend the rest of my life.  It is truly breathtaking to see how just a few events can set the pathway for the rest of your life.
While some things this year have been turned upside down, other constants have continued to be a blessing within my life.  Namely, my time at Athens Mothers’ Center.  Working with, playing with, and loving on those children has continued to touch my heart.  The lessons I have learned along the way from those kids are immeasurable, and certainly constitute their own separate reflection, which I will not delve into here.  I will say, however, that your word to a child is vital.  Kids (and adults, too) will respect you much greater when you are true to your word.  Even if that means that the choices you laid out for that child are not desirable, following through with what the child decides is important.  The respect and rapport you will build greatly outweighs any quick-fix or inconvenience.
With two semesters of graduate school behind me, and only (ha!) four or five more left, I acquired much knowledge, even beyond the realm of special education and learning disabilities.  One concept that was greatly reinforced here was the idea of looking beyond the disability.  In other words, in my line of work, I must treat the individual, not just the disability.  Again, I could devote MUCH here to this section, but I will try to keep it short.  The uniqueness behind each individual is remarkable, and should not be looked at as a liability, but –rather- a difference.  Further, differences should be examined collectively and celebrated, so that we can learn from and about them.
And now, I will share the other little tidbits I’ve picked up along the way this year:
1.  You can never hug or hold a child too much.  That goes double for kisses.
2.  You can never tell those around you that you love them too much.  Those three simple words take only a few minutes, but can make someone’s day.
3.  Never compromise who you are – not for anyone.  And don’t let others tell you that you have, when you know that you have not “changed”, but perhaps evolved along the way.
4.  Who knew that salami, mini pigs-in-a-blanket, roast beef, ham, and other meats were actually good?????
5.  Some of the most trying kids can be the sweetest, most rewarding to work with.
6.  A bike ride is great.  But a bike ride with a great companion is even better, especially when there’s a playground nearby.
7.  Play a board game.  It’s a good way to spend time with those you love.
8.  A little thank-you note can go a long way.
9.  I give the best (and possibly only) running pushes in town to kids on a swing.
10.  It’s okay if you are not currently using your college degree.  Just get out there and do something lucrative, that makes you happy, and/or makes the world a better place.
11.  It’s okay when you can no longer shop in the little girls’ clothing department.  Now you can go for a slightly older look.  Heck, one of these days, you may actually look your age!
12.  Meanness is a growing epidemic.  One known deterrent is a smile and a kind heart.  Pass it on!
Feel free to turn this into a discussion: simply share your reflections to your friends and family, or whomever you wish.  In any case, I want to know what each of you have learned this year.  You may copy and paste as much or as little of this message as you wish.  Think about it: what have you learned this year?  What wisdom can you impart on others?  Please.  Share. 
I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season.  I know I did.  I wish you all a happy, healthy 2005 (and beyond).  For those whom I do not get to see or talk to very often, this is my small way of saying “hello”, and let you know that I’m thinking of you.  I cannot wait to read about the last 365 days of your lives.  Happy reflection!
Barbara Mays

“The secret of education lies in respecting the pupil.”  –Ralph Waldo Emerson

Email sent 1/6/2005 6:30 PM
Keep on saving!  :o)
--Barbara

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