Saturday, January 14, 2017

Artist's impression

I'm planning on writing again tomorrow but tonight my parents were round and in telling them about my week I opened my photos and remembered this one for earlier this week when I was teaching my GCSE class.

We started a new topic, the Troubles. They had a handout (that I made) that should be on my memory stick but in the moment I couldn't find it. So I recreated the photo of Terence O'Neill on their handout with stunning accuracy, I think you'll agree.

You may think I have just drawn a stereotypical smiley face man, adding the essential elements of tie, desk and hands. But that fails to appreciate my art.

The empty desks represents Catholic representatives at this time. The fat, chubby hands show the power that O'Neill had at his disposal, while the tie shows that he is ready for action. The smile shows...yeah alright I drew a stereotypical smiley face man. Sush you.

Sunday, January 01, 2017

Awkward silence

So hi. How have you been?

It's 2017. Officially. All round the world in fact. The last time I wrote on my blog it was 2014. Aah. I remember it well, just like it was, well, 2-3 years ago.

It'd be rude not to mention the silence on my blog and I suppose there's a few reasons why I stopped writing on here. Primarily my life was school and I can't really write about that. Child protection and all that. And you know me, I'm a professional. (Yes, I'm sure if there was one word my students would use to describe me, it would be 'professional'.). But my life was too much about work and I didn't have time to write about it. Yet funny and meaningful stuff in my life happens in school. All. The. Time.

My other problem was Blogger making it it difficult. Photos were nigh-on impossible to easily upload and format. And I refer you to my earlier time reason (or maybe excuse, depending on your view). It took time to write this pile of anecdotes. (Or neckties as my phone just corrected it. I suppose it does take time to write neckties too. Scientists don't even quite know how long it takes.)

But I missed it. I missed writing. I missed documenting. I miss recording.

What's changed though? Why will this be different? Well, my life is less school than it was before. Maybe I'm getting better at it or maybe I care less about winging it but I think I can do this again.

But more importantly, I want to do this again. I want 2017 to be the year I look back and be glad I started blogging again.

Good luck everybody.

Monday, September 29, 2014

The world in my window

I moved house this weekend. That's a job, isn't it? My goodness. More on the new house to come (maybe). But for right now, let's celebrate the old place.

It's best summed up by what Johnny said when he and Kiera came to stay at Christmas. With their noses pressed up against the window and as the street lights from Bangor and Carrick twinkled all the way to Belfast, he said:

'Look Kiera, when you look out the window here, you can see the whole world.'
I'll miss that view.

Monday, August 25, 2014

U...who now?

Megann and I Facetimed tonight. It's been a couple of weeks since we talked, and to be honest I wondered what we have ever talked about and how we've remained friends as long as we have.

Let me explain.

In catching up on news, Megann asked how the Commonwealth Games were. Being American, she knows them as the non-American Olympics.

I replied and said they were great and that I got to see Usain Bolt again. (Third summer in a row...I knoooow!)

Megann: [blank face, nearly like she was still waiting for an answer]
Tina: We saw Usain Bolt!
Megann: [straight face] Who?
Tina: Usain Bolt! Bolt! Can you hear me?
Megann: It's working. I just don't know who that is.
Tina: WHAT?! YOU DON'T KNOW WHO USAIN BOLT IS?! The sprinter?! He's won the Olympics...twice!
Megann: I haven't seen the Olympics in ages. [She works at a summer camp in northern Michigan.]
Tina: But he's the most famous athlete at them! You must have heard of him!
Megann: We just see how the American athletes do. 
Tina: But he's in the 100m. Americans are in that!
Megann: Nope. Never heard of him. It's a good name for a sprinter, Bolt.

We laughed all the way through this and then about this for a while. I urged Megann to get our quote book, which includes all our greatest quotes (classics like the condo rep at Breckenridge asking when we stayed in Steamboat did we have an apartment or a suite) to write this one down.

As Megann wrote the quote down, she further proved she'd never come across Usain Bolt before, as she asked how to spell his name.

I spelt it for her and as we continued to laugh about it, I compared it to never having heard of Roger Federer. 


Oh stop. 

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Happy Wedding Day

Chris and Steph (but more particularly Chris),
You got married today and so I thought I'd mark the occasion by blogging. I know, there's not a wedding present in the land you'd rather have. Well Chris, you are my biggest cheerleader (or whatever more manly title you gave yourself). I tried to blog a bit this year (helped greatly with your encouragement) but ran out of steam in about April. I didn't even blog on my birthday which is a key date in my year. I'm sure that just makes this small token on your wedding day even more special. I know, you're welcome.

I should use the opportunity to tell you some sort of Princess-esque story from my summer rather than just pointing out that which you already know: you got married and I haven't really blogged since April.

Here are my highlights:
- This summer I went to Dubai and Glasgow so it was a summer of contrasts. Dubai was hot but the sun shone and that's what we went for. In Glasgow too, the sun shone…and then it rained…and then it was sunny…and then it rained…
- I read a book this summer. This is noteworthy because I don't really read books. I read enough with school and Twitter, thank you very much. But this summer, by the pool (in Dubai, in case that wasn't obvious) I read Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand, a biography of Louie Zamperini, an American athlete who became a bombardier during the Second World War and was taken as a Japanese POW after his plane crashed. Not exactly a light read but a brilliant story.
- I marked. Ugh. You know my feelings on that. Especially when the funniest answer I got was someone calling it Fianna Foal. I know; you can only raise a half smile to that sort of error.
- In Glasgow I saw some of the Commonwealth Games, even expanding my live sport repertoire to weightlifting and gymnastics. If anything's in it I preferred the weightlifting. But also saw athletics, track cycling, swimming and netball.
- I made a small guest appearance at CHW on Wednesday and Thursday. Seemed only right when I'd organised the seminars to show up for them. It didn't rain when I was there, which was pleasing.

So that's it. Today is the last day of summer so thanks for allowing me to go out on a high tonight. Few people, aside from teachers, can understand the pain of 'back to work blues' the last night of your six week holidays...
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