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My Apologies for my Long Absence

I have been rather lackadaisical with my blogging for the last year. However, I have a whole list of excuses to my defense! Which I will share with you now in the form of a short story.

Once upon a time last July 2013 I applied for a job in a new school (actually, I applied for 3 jobs with this school district, but that's neither here nor there). This was more or less a dream job for me: 8th grade English! No longer would I be asked to teach 12+ classes a week in a variety of subjects ranging from English to Art to Spanish to Religion. No longer would I be expected to "volunteer" my time before and after school for the myriad of activities that seemed to crop up throughout the year. While I am forever grateful to my start in the private school sector, I was excited about the opportunities ahead.

This dream job would be in a public school district across the bridge from my house and with it came a variety of advantages: 1) 50% increase in pay; 2) predictable hours (any additional required hours to the contract must be paid; not true of my former employment situation); 3) a retirement plan; 4) decent health care coverage including dental; and 5) room for job advancement. I had my interview at 10:00am and within an hour of arriving home I got the phone call offering me the position. I was through the roof!

In addition to starting this new job and all the work that comes with it, I was also about 70% of the way through my Master's Program in Curriculum & Instruction with a K-12 Reading Endorsement, which would pick up again in September 2013. Which of course meant there was lots of reading, writing, and work to do each week leaving very limited time for things like blogging.

I had finished the Reading Endorsement portion of the program the previous year and had added it to my license, so I was certified to be a reading teacher / reading specialist / whatever your district calls that position. The second half of my program was the Masters portion. This portion focused on general teaching strategies, addressing diversity in the classroom, legal and ethical issues, and the Capstone paper (similar to a thesis paper). I chose to do my Capstone on Graphic Novels in the Classroom and spent the better part of a year researching this topic. I now consider myself a bit of an expert on them and find my ears perking up anytime I hear mention of comics or graphic novels. January and February 2014 were our major writing months, and I did little else in my spare time. Finally, we finished our papers and presented them the last week of February. Shortly thereafter, I received a notice of program completion, my transcripts, and my diploma. Oh, did I mention that my new district gives a raise for getting a masters?

If you are not yet impressed by my innumerable excuses for why I haven't been blogging lately, I have one more really good one: in September 2013 my husband and I got pregnant. Or rather, I got pregnant, but it was planned... so my husband was part of it? Haha. In any event, between the new job, finishing my masters, and being generally run down from the pregnancy, I decided to put the blog on hold until a later unnamed date when I had more time.

In May 2014, while about 8 months pregnant, I walked the stage at my University signifying my completion of the program. This was an especially important moment for me as I had chosen not to walk for my undergraduate graduation, and later regretted it; I felt like I never really acknolwedged much less celebrated finishing my undergrad program. I invited my whole family to come to this graduation and enjoyed a wonderful night out celebrating this accomplishment.

Therefore, I sincerely hope that you forgive me for my absence and enjoy my upcoming blog posts, which will hopefully come with more frequency now!

And now I must leave as there is a screaming infant in the other room who demands my immediate attention...