Sunday, June 22, 2014

Summer Goals 2014

So, it's been two weeks since the end of school and it's been two weeks since I've last blogged. That was intentional. I needed some time off. I've still been tweeting, I've been working on a new Schedule B school position, and I've been reading. So, it's not that I've needed time OFF. I just needed a small respite from blogging.

And I needed to revamp. I've been spending time finding a new look for my blog and I think I'm finally happy with it--and ready to share.

But the look is not all I want to share.

I want to share my summer's goals. I've found, by making my goals public, I have a different level of accountability. If I make my network of friends and colleagues aware, they can continue to push me.

So, five goals for two and a half months:

  1. Have fun with my family. Every open house I attend for a graduating senior, the parents instruct me to take advantage of the time I have with my children. "It doesn't last," they say. I'm already feeling that. My oldest daughters are on the verge of pre-teendom and I need to squeeze the most out of my "cool" as I can.
  2. Write--it's time to finish the ELEVATE EMPATHY community writing project. The stories have been collected and edited, but there are still some finishing touches. It's been a great joy to receive these stories and work with my co-editor, Carlyn Arteaga, and publisher, Dan Ireland. The book is scheduled for an early fall release, but some final touches need to be made.
  3. READ--at least three "for fun" books (though this one, I can report, is already done--Smile and Persepolis and Dad is Fat have been unique and quick reads) and three professional books. I have two selected: How Children Succeed and Mindset. I'm looking for the perfect third book. Any suggestions?
  4. Time to restart the community book club. Last fall, our community went on a great literary journey by reading Emily Bazelon's Sticks and Stones. I want to present the community with a new challenge. Mostly, though, I want to include the student voice even more. It will be fun to plan this again over the summer months.
  5. Connect with friends. During the school months, my wife and I work hard to make this happen, but it isn't always easy. Lives, as children are growing, get busier and busier. The summer months are a great time to reconnect. And, over Nikki and my fifteen years of marriage, we have said repeatedly that what matters are the people with whom we surround ourselves. It reminds me of David Brooks's TedTalk "Should You Live For Your Resume...Or For Your Eulogy?" Take five minutes and give it a watch.

I'm happy to say that, if I'm doing life right--like I plan to this summer--I'll be busy connecting with family and friends. I'll be reading, writing, and connecting with community. I'll be thinking deeply about my job. 

I'll be doing all the things I care about.

And that makes for a pretty great summer.