Running into Spring

I love and hate running. I love when I start and finish running – it’s the actual running part that is hard.

With today being the first day reaching over 50 degrees in a while, I had to get outside and do something. When I left school today, I had mild intentions of going to the gym, and then I felt how nice it was outside and knew that I needed to head outdoors for my workout today.

I don’t usually run long distances – usually only about a mile or so – but today I pushed myself because I just didn’t want to go back inside. I ended up running 3 miles and walking another, and I was out there for nearly an hour. It felt fantastic. Sure, I’m sore now and I might not end up running tomorrow, but I am happy with what I did today.

This little taste of Spring has lifted my cold and dreary spirits, and I can’t wait until the weather stays this way.


First Day, First Slice for Slice of Life 2014!


As I begin this post, I still feel unsure of what to write, but according to the Slice of Life Challenge that I’m starting, it doesn’t really matter. It only matters that I am writing. When I started this blog back in July, I planned on using it as a way to reflect on my first year of teaching. Life got in the way, and I ended up doing nothing with it except for posting a few pictures of my classroom before the first day of school. Fast forward six months, and I have now learned more about teaching than I ever thought I could, and I continue to learn more each day.

So I will begin again today, with the Slice of Life challenge. All of my posts might not necessarily be related to classroom reflections, but since teaching is such a huge part of my life, many will be. I’ll use today as an “introductory” post, since writing about yourself is supposed to be one of the easiest things to do.

Hi, my name is Rachel. I teach 8th grade Language Arts in Dublin, Ohio. As a first year teacher, it is both incredibly exhausting and thrilling. (I consciously chose not to use the word “rewarding,” because it is so overused. But teaching is so rewarding. There’s a reason that descriptor is used so much.) In my free time I enjoy hiking, writing (which I never do enough of), reading, and knitting. I also have an unhealthy relationship with coffee, but I’m okay with that.

In the past I’ve participated in National Novel Writing Month (or NaNoWriMo), which challenges participants to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days during November. I’ve participated for the past five years, but only “won” (written 50,000 words) twice. Last year I got up to about 30,000 words, but didn’t manage to finish. So when I was told about the Slice of Life month-long challenge by my friend and fellow teacher, Gretchen, I was immediately on board. I could post a blog everyday for a month. It doesn’t even have to be long. That’s nothing compared to 2000 words a day during NaNoWriMo, right?

But this is different. Writing for NaNoWriMo, I can write whatever I want and never have to show it to anyone. It’s a great writing practice, but I can keep everything to myself. With this challenge, I know there is a possibility that others will be reading my writing, so it adds something to the challenge. I have to write something worth reading. And maybe it won’t always feel this way, especially when I get farther into the month, but I’m not used to writing for an audience beyond my students.

I’m excited to get started on this project, and I hope to see it through all the way to the end of March. I have a tendency to start things and never finish them, but I’m going to hold myself to this challenge. Let the wild writing begin!