Fifteen Beautiful Things, or “Please, please help me.”

Not counting today there are 15 school days remaining on my work calendar. I tried to post a nifty little ticker to commemorate the countdown, but it didn’t go over so well. So I thought I’d try something a little different.

My mantra has always been a combination of “I can do anything for a limited amount of time” and “Someday I’ll be looking BACK at this instead of staring it in the face.” And to help myself cope I’ve always operated on the “Something To Look Forward To” theory. I often plan things–happy, fun, relaxing things–in advance during difficult times so that I can look at my calendar and think, “Sure, this sucks, but in 9 days I’m getting a pedicure,” or, “I may not be enjoying myself now, but I will certainly enjoy spending the weekend in the mountains next month.” It isn’t exactly the same as wishing my life away…more like working toward a pleasant goal. And right now my “pleasant goal” is getting rid of these cretins seeing these children off for the summer.

I know I often talk about how intensely this time of year sucks in the schools. The kids think we should stop doing work, and their behavior is at an all time low. It is actually an expenditure of energy for me not to curse at them. I fantasize about hitting them. I look at my countdown on the board–“T-minus 15 days until the last day of school”–and it feels like 15 years. The end result, that shining last day marked with a huge star on the calendar, just isn’t quite enough. I need some mini-goals–a small shining star for each of the next 15 days.

Here’s where you come in. In the comments, please suggest something I could do in the evenings that I can look forward to while I am at work. Please do not suggest that I go out to a local bar and get drunk; Mia’s fake ID hasn’t come in yet, and even though she has more hair than I do, I don’t think I can pass her off as an unusually short 21-year-old just yet. However, suggesting that I stay home and get drunk is perfectly acceptable.

Kidding. I kid (although new cocktail recipes are always welcome). But seriously. Please share some glimmers of happiness with me. I will do what you suggest each day, and sometime the next morning I’ll blog about how wonderful your suggestion was and how it helped me survive one. more. day.

7 thoughts on “Fifteen Beautiful Things, or “Please, please help me.”

  1. netflix pan’s labyrinth!
    perfect making bagels (there was just an at home recipe in my paper today)
    start watching movie previews on quicktime to see what films you will be seeing in 2 weeks
    nightly countdown photo with Mia.
    season finale of shear genius!!!

  2. I will try to think of something. I am bad at this sort of niceness to self stuff.

    But thought I would add that walking with a cane makes that self-control even harder – I have been pointing it at children to get them to shut up and it would be oh so easy to just poke them a little….

  3. Bri… I just laughed at my desk seeing you about 40 years in the future – a grumpy New Yorker with a cane frightening children into good behavior by whacking them upside the head with her cane.

    Go through a cookbook and pick out a simple recipe that you’ve always wanted to try (or that just sounds really good) and then cook it with a friend for company and Mia in her bumbo seat looking on, and then eat it on your screened porch with candles and a cold cocktail and some good music playing in the background.

    Do all of this on a school night. My choice? Wednesday.

    Also, if you like games and silliness… order the Killer Bunnies starter set (google it) and get two or three other people to come by one night and sit down and learn the game. Very silly, light-hearted, cut-throat fun. And then the next day, at school, you can think about all the “Terrible Misfortunes” that could befall your worst students, and all the weapons you could launch at them (how about Green Jello with Evil Pineapple Chunks or Curry-Spiced Poppadams or Bitter-Sweet Chocolate-Covered Nuclear Raisins). Killler Bunnies has been the one way Kristin and I have found that will reliably ease our stress…

  4. okay, i challenge you to a scrabble game on tuesday, face to face, no e-mails. and i think we should make pina coladas or something. or wine. or GOOD BEER, none of that watery junk you like to drink. i kid.

  5. My OWN kids are driving me nuts right now (we’re in a whining phase – Lord help me), and just the opposite of you I find myself looking forward to teaching in Sept. I’m sure by the time October arrives, I will be ready for summer again.

    Anyway, nice things? I like trips to the zoo, botanic gardens, eating breakfast out, having friends over for dinner (take-out is okay!), a date night, getting a new book from the bookstore or library (have to admit- Love the library), meeting a friend for coffee, attempting crossword puzzles, getting into watching a series, like the Sopranos or Weeds, rented from Netfl*x, taking really long walks with coffee in hand through city streets or the country. Haven’t done many of these things in a long time, mind you, but maybe something will work for you.

    Hope the end comes quickly!

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