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Showing posts from 2016

Follow your heart?

Contrary to popular belief, maybe we should NOT always follow our heart. The heart is unreliable and can even be manipulated by others. These unreliable emotions are what leave us exhausted, frustrated, doubtful, hopeless, and lacking focus. 
God wants us to be more emotionally attached to him than to any other person (or circumstance), and that is how we can find emotional stability and health. We must be honest with what we feel, challenge it, and change it. We don't have to automatically accept our feelings--good or bad. We can take control of them. 
Above all else, guard your heart because out of it flow all the issues of your life. (Prov. 4:23)
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. (Matt. 11:28)
So who or what am I more emotionally attached to?? Wow...Where do I even begin?

Protesting [during] the national anthem

Few states take their patriotism as seriously as Texas does, but despite the fear of alienating my Texan family members and friends, I believe I have something important to share about the recent national anthem protests. 
According to many media outlets, and even more internet trolls, several professional athletes have begun "protesting the national anthem," but it seems to me that they are in fact advocating for what the anthem represents: freedom and justice for all. By quietly sitting while the anthem is sung, they're protesting the system that is not enabling the anthem to serve its true purpose for all Americans. I haven't heard any of them say they disagree with the ideal of American freedom or with the people who fought for that flag, but they certainly disagree with the fact that the same protection doesn't belong to everyone. 
A recent statement from Steve Largent, a former NFL star turned politican helped shape my new perspective on this topic. I appreci…

A silent nightmare... with piano and flute?!

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=99-gFt4GEiA 
If you want a glimpse into living with nightmares, pick just a few sections to preview then simply move on to whatever video pops up next. Fairly unsettling but not so bad every once in a while. 
If you want to understand what it's like to experience this every night, then watch the whole thing and sit silently for a few minutes trying to "process it" afterward. Harder to handle when it's that complex, detailed, and dark all night, all week long. 
If you just want a good laugh, have me over before you watch it and I'll narrate the whole thing for you...Presto horreur comique! (Humor is a good coping mechanism, right??)
P.S. Remember, the early 1900s weren't as "wholesome" as some people might have us think! This is pretty darn twisted at times...

Spokane summer!

This new job of mine has taken me all around the Spokane area, and on a daily basis I find myself looking out the window thinking, "that looks like an awesome place to visit later." Well, summer is almost here, and that means I will soon have time to explore all these amazing places I have been wondering about!

So please take a look at this list and let me know which one(s) you'll join me on!   Please also let me know if there is an awesome place I should add to this list! 
My goals for this list of activities: 1) To enjoy more of what this Spokane region has to offer! 2) To spend time with friends--or maybe even in solitude--while being active and proactive! 3) To spend a maximum of $0-10 on each experience. Of course, some outdoor adventures will be relatively FREE! Some days will be longer and possibly include multiple activities, so I anticipate that the cost per day will vary. 
Locations I'd like to visit: 9 Mile Falls (hiking/picnicking, etc.), Indian Painted Rock…

Hi-Cap in High School

It was an honor being asked to present at the 2016 Celebration of Talent conference, and I spent weeks figuring how to teach teachers about supporting highly capable students in high school.  Then I realized that the best thing I could do is share the stories of students--straight from their own mouths (or word documents)! I reached out to a handful of young adults from throughout Washington State, asked them 4 important questions, then compiled some of their most poignant answers.


The following presentation includes insights from 14 respondents with a WIDE variety of high school experiences. I hope you'll review these answers with an open mind. And I invite you to share them with teachers, students, and even parents who could benefit by a more thorough understanding of how to support today's gifted students.


Hi-Cap in High School: https://youtu.be/0Kq9_ftAguo

Since the slides have been converted to a video, you'll probably want to pause to give yourself  enough time to re…

Transforming education with Erin Jones

One month ago, I attended a diversity and equity session at the University where I work. I heard Erin Jones speak to two different groups, and I spoke briefly with her one-on-one between sessions. Throughout the entire day, I was not only impressed by her realistic awareness of today's education system, but I was also increasingly inspired by her willingness to confront difficult issues that I am also passionate about. 
Two of her statements resonated the most with me that day. Once, in response to the legislative and systemic challenges facing today's teachers, Erin exclaimed, "I think there's going to be a revolution in education someday soon, and I can't wait to be a part of it!" And I write the word "exclaimed" intentionally because she said this with passion and energy, and a great big, beaming smile. In the last 15 years, I've probably had hundreds of conversations with hundreds of educators from around Washington state; I've heard vari…

No, I'm not pregnant but thanks for asking.

Awkward. I just can't find any other way to begin a post about weight gain. For many people, it's uncomfortable enough to deal with silently but it can be downright embarrassing when someone else comments on it. There's so much speculation and judgement surrounding  weight and appearance these days. Either someone has gained too much or lost too much or worried too much about it or criticized others too much for it. It's just awkward and although I've had LOTS of inner conversations about my recent weight gain, this is the first time I've had anything figured out well enough to write about it. 
You see, the only thing I don't really love about my new job is that I spend so much time driving from school to school--Since August, I've basically been in a sedintary job, and judging my the rate at which I've outgrown my wardrobe, the rest of my lifestyle doesn't work too well with a sedintary job. At first it wasn't so bad: I had a new job and a n…

Inspired by today's dancers…

Dance isn't easy. 
It's not easy to push your body close to its limits day after day. It's not easy to keep practicing at home when no one else is watching. It's not easy to force a smile or a scowl or a surprised look when all you feel like is being alone or asleep or with friends who don't dance. 
But dance is so worth it. Because you learn how to push your body safely to create new limits. And how to pull a long-lost emotion from deep down, so that you can share it with others who need it even more than you do. You learn how to depend on others with your whole being, and how to give your all so they can literally put their trust in you.
You learn how to open your mind and your body to combinations you might not have chosen for yourself. How to overcome obstacles that you once thought would overcome you. How to become a part of something bigger. 
And you learn that dance was never about the performance in the first place. The performance is only the proof of the proc…

To sleep, to dream. Again.

Poems are a lot like dreams.No.  Poems are a lot like nightmares. 
Until you've been broken by one,  You'll never understand how deeply  It can sting, burn, and glow. 
And you'll never understand the scars left behind By nightmares and poems.  Beautifully unique scars.  Uniquely hideous scars. 
Nightmares are like poems.  For a time, you live inside them, Surrounded by their reality, For better or for worse, Fighting against the sting, Or giving into the burn, Or basking in the glow Of their truths. And their lies.  Until you wake up one day and realize  No one else sees them, or cares. 
Nightmares are a lot like poems.  When it's too dark to find your way out.

Diagnosis: Nightmare sleep disorder with significant Alpha waveintrusions

One month after my sleep study and here's what I've learned: Sleep really is about quality not quantity! 
If YOU also struggle with a potential sleep disorder, I strongly encourage you to ask your doctor about a sleep study. Yes, it's almost impossible to get a "normal" night's sleep with all those wires pasted to your body, but the doctors are still able to interpret the results in a way that sheds light on your situation. So far, here are the most important things I've learned about my sleep struggles:
1) I wake up about every 2.5 minutes, or over 130 times in a 5 hour sleep. Even though most of these are for less than 15 seconds at a time, that's still enough disruption to keep my body from actually resting and healing like it should.   2) I reach REM sleep about 30 minutes later than most people, and then my nightmares begin. About 4 times per night.  3) Alpha wave intrusion also means my brain starts acting like it's awake when it should be …