My Spring Break List

I love making lists. Checklists, to-do lists, grocery lists, bucket lists, lists of accomplishments. I think I’ve passed on this love of lists to the kids in my class. “I like making lists,” I’ll say as we begin our afternoon and I write down some things that we’ll be doing in the afternoon. “I like lists, too!” some of them will chime together. (Although, at that age some of them just like liking things!)

I didn’t make a list to begin this spring break, but here’s a list to end it.

  • I played board games with Ayla, continuing our lazy morning ritual. We’re the earlier risers in the house: I’ll wash up some dishes and start a pot of coffee while she fixes a bowl of cereal and asks, “Do you want to play a board game?” We played Monopoly, Monopoly Deluxe Edition, Monopoly City, The Settlers of Catan, Scrabble, and Uno.


  • Ayla and I spent a morning down in Old Strathcona. We had some book money to spend, and enjoyed some window shopping and together time out of the house. Ayla picked up Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, which she’s fervently reading. I grabbed a couple of books for the classroom ??? Once I Ate a Pie and Flip-O-Storic ??? and a couple for me ??? The City of Ember and Mitch Albom’s For One More Day. (Ayla and I are reading Ember together.) There’s something about the serenity and nostalgia of Albom’s writing. It’s a wonderful way to spend a cozy afternoon.


  • Lisa and I filed our income taxes ??? a month early! (As a seasoned procrastinator, I celebrate these rare occasions of finishing early.)
  • While filing my taxes, I took the opportunity to organize my files and receipts ??? and to purge old paperwork.
  • After organizing my files, I updated our budget and spending plan.
  • I kept the house tidy. And I kept up with the laundry.
  • I took the dogs for some walks in the warming weather. I even clipped Andi’s claws, so that she doesn’t clack-clack as much on the floors.
  • I did some shopping. Used up some gift cards to get some new clothes.
  • Went out for dinner with the family (a rare occurrence, given our busy schedules). We went to the Japanese Village in downtown Edmonton to enjoy some Teppan-yaki. The salmon and steak were amazing! (Jadzia will be dining there for her 16th birthday party.)
  • I watched some movies ??? by myself, with Lisa, and with the whole family. Respectively, those were: The Fighter, Source Code, and Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief.
  • Mom, dad and I enjoyed catching up over a coffee in downtown St Albert.
  • I edited a paper for mom.
  • I got my hair cut. The hair left on the floor could have made a comfy bed for my Chihuahua!
  • I helped Ayla deliver her newspapers.
  • I woke up every morning before 8:30. I didn’t sleep any of my days away.
  • I cooked dinner one night. Spaghetti and meat sauce with a salad. “Cooked” is misleading. Perhaps “made.” Or “put together.”
  • Lisa and I made our monthly trip to Costco for groceries. (And my teeth are loving the new Sonicare system we picked up!)
  • I blogged. Just now!

Perhaps as important as my list of what I did over spring break is my list of what I didn’t do:

  • I didn’t work. I didn’t plan and prepare and stress over what we need to accomplish in the brief two few months that finish the school year. Sure, I thought about it. I did some reading on my Twitter feeds and blog readers. But I stayed away from the classroom. I know that there will be plenty of time for that in the weeks to come.
  • I didn’t bath the dogs ??? and I should have. But we enjoyed cuddling, walking, playing, and car rides all the same!
  • I also didn’t (but should have) prepared my applications for teaching next year. My temporary contract is coming to an end in June, and while I’ve made some concerted efforts to expand my professional network this year, I know that I will also have to actually apply and interview if I want a full time position next school year. This will have to be my weekend work for the next month.
  • I didn’t spend a lot of money. The shopping that I did was with gift cards that have been patiently waiting on my desk. Our dinner out and movies happened through some careful budgeting and sticking to a spending plan. And playing board games and going for walks are free!

How does your spring break list look? I hope you find it as satisfying and rejuvenating as I did!

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