Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Musings and rambles

I am participating in the
 Slice of Life.  
All participants are writing about one moment, one part of their day, 
on Tuesdays.
Thank you, Two Writing Teachers!

I cannot seem to land on any one topic for a blogpost today, so here are a few rambles related to this COVID-19 pandemic:

These are strange times indeed. Tomorrow, I will have my first ever video chat with my Dad, who is 90 years old. How will this even work? He has rather severe vision impairment, and he is nearly deaf. Nevertheless, I am so excited that this technology exists, and that there is the possibility of connecting with him in real time. I am so thankful that his nursing home has offered this option to us.

He has been in isolation for several weeks now, and he has stayed healthy and clear of the virus. There was one case of COVID-19 in the nursing home; this case was isolated immediately, and there have been no more cases in some three weeks. Our fingers are crossed that this will remain true, and that these dear residents will somehow miss this pandemic. Unfortunately, this means that we won't be able to visit inside the building with Dad for the foreseeable future. 

This morning I went outside to water my new red geraniums in the big pot next to the side entrance of my house, only to find there were no more blooms. Every single bloom had been eaten by some renegade deer, sometime overnight. Unbelievable! Perhaps the deer read my post from last week, where I confessed to feeling guilty about this purchase during a pandemic? There's irony or karma there, or something.

The Classroom
We got word that there will be no returning to school for the rest of the school year; only virtual learning for the weeks ahead. We left school so abruptly back in mid-March, with the now-foolish assumption that this would be a break of one to two weeks. We just walked out that day. Did we seal the goldfish crackers and put them away in the plastic bin? What papers are in my cubby? What bulletin boards are up? How many overdue library books are on the book shelf? I find myself thinking about the paint that I left in the paint cups.

So many fun moments with little ones these past few days. In our latest FaceTime chat, my granddaughter (17 months old) leafed the pages of a favorite board book, and called out the animal noises for each page - she's reading right? Truly a delight to watch her excitement with that book.

Then, there were the phone calls with my preschool students. One silver lining to this pandemic is the one-on-one conversations I am having, uninterrupted, with each of these treasures. I heard one passionate story after another - playing with dolls in the dollhouse, planting seeds and now the plant has three leaves, the finding of a beetle and its larvae in the woods (Dad's an entomologist!), building a cardboard house for a toy elephant, and the plot to the latest Ninjago (this was totally over my head). One preschooler insisted on reading me Peter's Chair by Ezra Jack Keats, knowing this was one of my favorite picture books - she turned every page and shared what she recalled, often using the exact words as written. She truly is showing early reading skills. I am impressed.

The Cardinals
We had a bit of a windstorm and some rain mid-day, and I looked out the window to see what was transpiring. There in the midst of my redbud tree were two beautiful cardinals, one male (bright red) and one female (lighter red), hanging on for dear life. They were on two separate sides of the tree, both sheltered within multitudinous small branches, as if weathering the impromptu storm with a makeshift lean-to. Both birds were puffed up nice and round, as if they had eaten too many cookies, too, though I suppose they were simply defending themselves against the cold breeze. I was fascinated by their ability to hop around on the branches, moving with the wind, making do. Just trying to make it through. When the gusting subsided, they flew away. I feel lucky to have seen that.


  1. I’ve struggled to think of blogging topics, too, which is why I landed where I did today. Your snippets are so much more positive than my own musings. It reminds me of where we land as teachers and how our opposite spectrums serve our students best. I want to hear about the video call w/ your father. I love hearing that your students are finding joy in online learning w/ you. That’s a big win. Your description of your classroom reminds me of those movie images of the rapture. No guilt about the geraniums. Curse the damn deer. They should not eat the flowers. Onward!

  2. Hang on, cardinals! It's nesting season, so I'm sure the gusty winds this time of year are stressful for them. You wondering about your classroom got me wondering about mine. I'm sure mice are having a field day! -- Christie @ https://wonderingandwondering.wordpress.com/