Sunday, August 9, 2009

Life Lessons


(Image from rtsd.org; Radnor Middle School)

We stand at the crossroads, each minute, each hour, each day, making choices. We choose the thoughts we allow ourselves to think, the passions we allow ourselves to feel, and the actions we allow ourselves to perform. Each choice is made in the context of whatever value system we've selected to govern our lives. In selecting that value system, we are, in a very real way, making the most important choice we will ever make. Benjamin Franklin

As a new school year is set to begin, I remember fondly the time I spent preparing my classroom for the eager young faces who would walk through the door. As my former co-workers can attest, I absolutely loved the beginning of the school year and was notorious for being the first teacher "back at school", sometimes as early as the end of July!

Fifteen months ago, I walked out of that same classroom door for the last time. It is a decision that I do not regret. Rather then spend hours, and literally days, working up at school, I spend my hours and days playing with my 5-year old and 2-year old, preparing home cooked meals, and working hard at making our house a home. For me, this past school year was filled with lazy days building ladybug houses, baking cupcakes, and taking FREE Fun Friday Field trips!

This summer, I spent quite a bit of time in prayerful contemplation about past life decisions that I have made, and future decisions that my husband and I need to make. We have been reading Stephen R. Covey's The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Families and have been working on a family mission statement. While it has been a bit of a struggle (financially) to change our value system, we know that the new value system we have adopted to govern our lives will have a lasting impact upon our children. It has been a life "lesson" learned better late than never.

5 comments:

  1. Every little choise we make, changes the rest of our lives. It´s amazing isn´t it? I think it´s great that You choosed to stay home with Your children, but what will You do when tyhey start school?
    Christer.

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  2. Hope you continue to find contentment in retirement.

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  3. One of the great gifts of life is that we can continue to learn forever! I think I should probably learn your new plan too!

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  4. Hi Valerie--

    Choices and changes are two of the hardest things we face. Each can make a big impact on our lives but
    that is part of life.
    Our summer has been made up of these two things and we struggle
    with change more than anything.
    I too work in education and have spent the last month trying to decide if I really want to go back to special ed. or not. Since I
    don't do change very well I guess
    I'm off to what I know.
    Good luck with your plans and enjoy
    your family!

    Melinda

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  5. Thanks for stopping by my blog Valerie! I think it is adorable that Mary Catherine is so into horses and ponies....I remember being a young horse crazy girl her age! :) I read everything horsey I could get my hands on, too!
    As a school teacher, I get your "back to school" classroom set-up, I will be doing that very soon! I do think your decision to stay at home is a personal one and only you know if it is right for you and your family. Personally, I hope to do that someday when I have children, at least stay home to see them into their school years. Hopefully my hubby will make enough to support us, it's not like my teacher's salary makes me the breadwinner anyway, lol!

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Thank you so much for taking the time to comment. Your kind words are appreciated! As Mother Teresa said, "Let us always meet each other with smile, for the smile is the beginning of love."

Valerie