Sunday, May 4, 2014

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

The Good:

There are only 32 days left until the school year ends! Can I get a “Yahoooo!” and a “Yipeeee!” please? Not that it hasn’t been a lovely adventure teaching this year’s classes, but I am cooked, fried, baked… well, not baked. I’m not into that. Bottom line, I am getting close to being no longer able to string words together into coherent sentences while teaching, therefore a summer vacation is the prescribed solution for this unfortunate condition.

I’m at that point where I don’t want to give homework anymore, because it’s finally nice outside. I want my students to forget staying inside and go explore the natural world. I want them to run around and breathe fresh air, even though it may bring about an allergy attack for like 75% of them, me included. Still, the four walls of the classroom are closing in while the sunshine beams on all sorts of things sprouting from the ground and from the trees.

The world is alive. I want to be alive with it. I want to toss the routine, kick off my shoes, and feel the warm earth beneath my feet. I want to sit in my Outdoor Writing Office and finish Book Three in the series I’m working on—my Maple Leaf Series. I plan to release Books One, Two, and Three in quick succession this summer, and I’m eager to give them to the reading masses.

I want to reunite with Summer Chris, the best version of myself. The one that doesn’t scowl or say things like, “If you were listening to the directions, you’d know what to do.” The one that doesn’t have that little crease between the brows due to the tiny frustrations that add up to a headache at the end of the day. The one that has time to paint her toenails and whip up great dinners and stay up late watching movies The Husband would never, never, never watch without a great deal of mockery and commentary.

The one who doesn’t care what time it is, because there is no schedule.

The one who is releasing the Maple Leaf Series. Book One is due out in June. It's called More Than Pancakes and is about a maple syrup company owner and a hotel designer. He loves the woods. She fears the woods. The woods will either stand between them or give them everything they ever needed.

Here's the cover:

This is my first dabble in series writing. I'm super excited. A maple syrup company actually taps trees on my Vermont property and that's how I got the notion to write this book. There's something very sexy about watching men trek into the snowy woods with sleds full of equipment.

Oh, I’m downright giddy just thinking of the goodness ahead in only 32 days.

The Bad:

There are still 32 days left until the school year ends. That’s three sets of ten plus two more. (I’m a math teacher. I like to break numbers down.) That’s more than a typical month. That’s about 208 hours of school still to go. That’s about 12,480 minutes of learning that still has to take place. Standards still need to be met. Lessons still need to happen. End-of-year assessments still loom ahead. A classroom the students and I have spent all year messing up has to be cleaned.


And you just know Mother Nature is going to swing the temperature dial to tropical so that it’s hot enough in my classroom to bake cookies on the students’ desks. Not that we can bake cookies in school without special parental permission anymore. Get ready for the permanent sweat mustache, frizzy hair, and trying to find lightweight clothing that is cool, yet professional. Meanwhile, my tank tops and shorts taunt me in the closet each morning before work.

“Wear us. Wear us. Wear us.”

Shut up. I’m not above covering you guys in peanut butter and giving you to the dog to shred.

My only hope is that time moves swiftly and that our journey to the last day of school is both productive and fun. If there is a way I can institute a Drink Lemonade-a-thon, we might all survive.

The Ugly:

Refer back to the line “Get ready for the permanent sweat mustache, frizzy hair…” above and add to that the fact that swimsuit shopping will have to be done. There’s your ugly, my friends.

There. It. Is.

What are you looking forward to? A vacation? A book release? Some new adventure you’ve got planned for yourself? Tell me all about it.

Oh, and I have a giveaway going on at my author Facebook page for a $10 Amazon gift card AND an Alex and Ani starfish bangle bracelet in honor of the release of my YA romance, Sail With Me. Today's the last day to enter, so scoot! Enter HERE.



Margo Hoornstra said...

Love that cover. And your attitude! Right now I'm looking forward to getting an agent to work with and releasing my latest that has taken FOREVER to write, STOLEN TRUST. Happy Summer soon!

Christine DePetrillo said...

Good luck, Margo!

Jannine Gallant said...

You sound like my kids. Everyone involved, teachers and students (probably the principal and the cleaning staff), are so over the school year by May. June--forget about getting anything done! I'm self pubbing a book over 20 years in the making soon. Very soon. Beginning of summer. Can't wait. Maybe I'll tease everyone with the beautiful cover our Alison created for my next post! Best of luck with yours, Chris. Your cover is gorgeous!

Christine DePetrillo said...

Yes, do tease us with your cover, Jannine!

Leah St. James said...

Too funny, Christine! I would wish for your 12,480 instructional minutes to hurry up and just be done with it, but then I'd be wishing away time. And I hate wishing away time. Instead, I'll hope that the time is (mostly) fun and free of stress! This too shall pass! (I love the cover, too!)

Diane Burton said...

I remember those days, Chris, when as a teacher I anxiously looked forward to the end of the school year. Then, as a parent, I wasn't so thrilled. Great post.

Diane Burton said...

Oops, forgot to mention. Great cover.

Alicia Dean said...

In ways I feel sorry for you and in ways I envy you. I know the school months must be torturous, but entire summer off???? Good luck with waiting out those minutes. Hope it isn't too painful. I LOVE your cover and your premise. I could almost smell the maple syrup while I was reading about it. Very funny and entertaining post! What am I looking forward to? Well, I very much dislike hot weather, so not that. BUT, it is MLB season, which makes my very, very happy. I have a few projects in the works that I am loving writing. AND...although I had a recent thumb drive corruption fiasco and lost my recent WIPS, I might have found a flash drive this morning that contains one of those WIPS (the shorter one, but still....that means it might not be lost after all.) So, I'm looking forward to potentially being further along in the process than I thought I was. But, I had to head out to the day job before I could thoroughly investigate. (The day job that I love and for which I do NOT have horrible bosses, but for which I do not get the summer off :))

Christine DePetrillo said...

The great and wonderful Dar Albert did my cover. She's my new fave person.

I love teaching...but that's sort of not what I do anymore with all these standards and assessments and behavior management programs, etc. Teaching has morphed into something strange these days. July and August are vital to my mental stability and when I get to feel like a true writer.

Good luck with everything you ladies are looking forward to!