Holiday musings

I cannot remember the books I’ve read any more than the meals I have eaten; even so, they have made me – Ralph Waldo Emerson

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I’m at my parents’ house in Tasmania (but this is a forlorn image of a road trip I took in January in southern California, sorry) and I’ve been spending a great deal of time reading, drinking coffee and watching Gilmore Girls. Mum and I waited until we saw each other for the holidays to watch the 6 hours of revival episodes and it was a bloody rollercoaster.
       Side note: I have recently realised the boring nature of my writing style, which is similar to a              descriptive recount of my life. I apologise for the mundane prose I use and perhaps it will be a            New Years resolution of mine….. Do better writing.
I cried in several scenes and since watching the fourth and final (for now) episode I have been reading Reddit fan theories about the choices made by the writers and possibilities for the future of the show. What has my life become?

Last night I drank two bottles of wine with mum and her neighbour, Dee, who gave me much life and dating advice which was ironically, outdated. Her dating tips included “when men come up to you in bars (who does that anymore) and ask them what you do you need to embellish the truth and have fun with it, but never lie” and “you need to flirt, that’s how I got my husband” and “go to sports games alone! Loads of men will come up to you and you must ensure you know a few facts about the sport so you can chat to them about it”. It was certainly an interesting night and aside from these many laughs I actually got some insightful advice from her which I always relish in these times of transition, particularly in anticipation of the New Year. We had a long discussion about the nature of text messaging and social media and I’ve decided once more, to temporarily (for as long as I see fit) depart from the vapid world that is Facebook. I feel as though staying off social media is a great way to ascertain who your true friends are, as you get to see who actually gets in contact to invite you to an event or give you a call when they miss you. I’ve also decided in the New Year to focus on having less screen time and using my free time to read more books (I’ve started a bookstagram!), get outdoors or to the gym every single day, spend time cooking delicious, healthy wholefoods (I’m trying to get into a new diet); and most importantly, to do Uni related reading and kickstart my final year of my Masters degree…. scary stuff. I think a big part of achieving all these goals in my last two months of vacation is to make a solid effort to get up early (around 8am) every day and to get into a real routine, even when I’m lacking commitments such as daytime work or classes!

“Every morning you have two choices: continue to sleep with your dreams, or get up and chase them” – Unknown

Have you got any resolutions or personal goals for the New Year? I’d love to hear them! Xx

 

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Thoughts during teaching rounds

“Do one thing every day that scares you.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

This quote basically summarises every day that I have spent in Prep, doing my teaching rounds for the last 3 weeks. I have one week remaining and I am so excited to be finished with assessments, early mornings and lesson planning for the next few months!
I’ve learnt a bucket load during this placement, about teaching and where I see myself in the next few years. So far I’ve come to the following conclusions:

  1. I don’t see myself teaching Prep (Kindergarten in the US) at least when I am first graduating, it is a lot of pressure and I think I’d like to teach older kids who I can share my passions with (geography, world cultures etc).
  2. Lesson planning is hard work and is really testing my time management skills – each lesson I plan is either way too quick or is too difficult for the kids and we have to move on to another activity…. I definitely have a lot to work on there.
  3. I don’t mind the teaching hours, afternoon runs during daylight savings time are bloody lovely and I thoroughly enjoy getting up early.
  4. I’d like to teach in a less academically rigorous school with a more community-oriented vibe, preferably one with an alternative curriculum such as Steiner.
  5. I am highly passionate about morning teas.
  6. My coffee consumption is spiralling out of control and I think I need to go to rehab.

Teaching lessons to 27 five year olds (including a lesson sequence about basic robotics coding!) has been an incredibly nerve-wracking experience but I have learnt a great deal from my amazing mentor, particularly about behaviour management. I’ve also decided that I am going to have a meticulously clean classroom and I have found so many inspiring resources and books that I cannot wait to dive into during my holidays. #Educationnerd

They say that after your first big teaching placement you should definitely know if its the job for you, and even though this placement has been so exhausting and quite stressful at times, I know that I will love to have my own class someday and I am so motivated to finish my final two semesters! Thanks for reading, see you next time. X

P.S> If you’re a teacher reading this I would love to chat with you 🙂

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Me walking 3 miles in Slovakia after we got off at the wrong train stop and got very lost indeed.

 

 

Come what may…

I finished my Diploma of Languages in Spanish 2 weeks ago (yahoo!) and I’ve been so busy that I haven’t yet had a chance to reflect on the amazing experiences I had during that course! When I was in Europe I travelled in Spain for three weeks with only 2 semesters of Spanish under my belt and had an incredible time, managing to get buy and purchase ever-important coffees with my limited skills. After four semesters I travelled to MEXICO for one month, where I stayed with a host family and studied at Universidad La Salle in Mexico City, before travelling to three other cities with friends (more on that here). This sparked my absolute adoration for Mexico and its people and has pushed me to get through my Masters degree (in Primary education) so I can find a proper job and save up to get over to Central/South America for an extended time! Learning Spanish at RMIT was an incredible experience, I made some wonderful amigos and I know that this is just the tip of the iceberg for my language learning journey…. after I’ve got Spanish down pat I would love to learn German or French…. let’s see!

When I finished my course the tutor sent us this beautiful e-mail which was rather inspiring, I’ll translate it vaguely for any non-Spanish speakers 🙂

Feliz fin de semana y no se estresen demasiado durante las proximas semanas de exámenes y tareas. Cuando tengan 40 van a ver que nada es tan grave y que en la vida es bueno tener planes, pero también ser flexible con lo que venga en nuestro camino.

Have a great weekend and don’t stress yourselves out too much during the next few weeks of exams and studying. When you are forty years old, like me, you are going to see that nothing is so bad and that in life it is good to have plans but also to be flexible and accept whatever comes in our journey!

So lovely.

P.S. If you ARE a Spanish speaker, particularly in Melbourne AU, I’d love to connect! X

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Me in a Puebla Alleway, December 2015

Running for the gals

Hello! Some friends and I are going to be running in the Melbourne Marathon next weekend and I will be doing my first ever 10K (literally)! I was hoping to get a practice in before hand but I honestly have no time, what with exams and everything so it seems as though next Sunday will be my first attempt.

I’ve been running vigorously for a few weeks now, but the longest consecutive run I have done is 5 kilometres. I am super proud of myself though, staying fit is really hard with classes and a part-time job. You can follow me on Strava to see my struggles.

For the Melbourne Mara, we’ve been raising money through this awesome charity called One Girl. They send girls in West Africa to school and just $300 AUD is enough to fund one girl’s fees for an entire year. Thus far we have raised enough to send 4 girls (and there are 4 of us) which we are so pumped about. If you want to check out or donate to our page you can do so right here.

Stay tuned for a post-run update, there is a high chance that I won’t be able to walk but the next day I have my teaching rounds in a very full Prep classroom… (I have a month of placement coming up) so wish me luck! X

Hey, welcome.

“There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”
Ernest Hemingway

Hi, you’ve reached my new blog, where I will write things which will often be accompanied by images I took. This quote from Hemingway is a pretty apt summary of my approach to blogging which is basically a situation where I write things down that I think without much regard for stylistic considerations or whether my content is interesting for anybody other than myself. I’ve decided to start this blog mainly for travel purposes as the old Tumblr situation feels much like high school and I think its time to spread my wings. I’m going to backdate some posts from my Tumblr so you can read about my previous travel experiences, if you wish it. Hopefully there will be many more to come as I hope to get out there again once I have finished this Masters!

Here is a summary of my life if you are interested or do not know me. If its the latter then howdy and I am unsure why but positively delighted that you’ve found yourself on my humble page. I hope you will enjoy my musings on this here blog. X

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Me at Mackenzie Falls, Grampians NP, Victoria, 2016.

Some time in Spain

I’m sitting on the bus from Madrid to Zaragoza, gazing out the window at endless green and brown plains and strange sparse shops. I’m listening to some Jack Johnson and the occasional John Mayer, having the ultimate relax after a very intense but fantastic week of Sangria, mini 1€ sandwiches (Cien Bocadillos), new friends and lots lots more sangria. I met up with some friends from my German summer camp in Madrid and we had an incredible time filled with sun and laughter. Yesterday we spent our last day together in Madrid at the Central Park (Retiro), napping in the grass (we were extremely hungover), playing guitar, eating too many Pringles and iceypoles, listening to Radiohead and discussing whether anybody would trust me with looking after a baby (hypothetical scenario) amongst other interesting topics. After a week of travelling alone it was so refreshing to have friends to share food and laughs with; someone to hold my coffee while I put my backpack on (an endless struggle of the solo traveller), and someone’s shoulder to rest my head on in the Metro when we got home from the club at 8am and had to check out of our hostel at 10:30. It’s the small things 🙂

I am now en route to stay with my pal Marina in Zaragoza, where she lives and studies. I’m ever so excited to indulge in some home cooked meals and be away from the big city and tourists! Apparently it’s a beautiful city so I am very excited to arrive. Afterwards I am heading to Paris for several days and then onwards to famous London. I’m currently considering a brief trip to Dublin to visit dear Hannah – I’ll probably regret it if I don’t go so I think I’ll do it! Apart from all the amazing teaching experiences which will help my career path and the endlessly hilarious memories, I think the best part about my Camp Adventure experience was all the international friends I have made. When I next come to Europe I know I have friends in Ireland, Wales, England, Spain, and especially Germany. Additionally I’ve got new friends in the USA and I’ve already planned a California road trip with one friend this December! We will drive from San Diego to San Francisco via LA and Santa Cruz, with many burgers, beers and selfies to be enjoyed the way. And most importantly I have the exciting prospect of having international friends come to visit me in Melbourne! Over and out, X.

NOTE: I have been editing these posts and moving them from my tumblr page to here because it is a *more serious* platform and encourages me to work on my writing. Two musings have come of this. Firstly, it has allowed me to edit and reflect on my writing style, in particular to veer away from the use of the ever notorious ‘really’ and even more so, “very”. I despise both words and I am trying so hard to avoid them wherever possible in an attempt to deepen my vocabulary and think more about my writing. Secondly, I have been considering planning a trip to USA and Guatemala in the mid-year University break next year (from May to June). This post and its mention of friends and cherished memories has started to sway me more towards the “just bloody book the flights” side of things…. so we’ll see. Lots to think about. Thank you for reading, I’m so glad you’re here. X

“So avoid using the word ‘very’ because it’s lazy. A man is not very tired, he is exhausted. Don’t use very sad, use morose. Language was invented for one reason, boys – to woo women – and, in that endeavour, laziness will not do. It also won’t do in your essays.” – N.H. Kleinbaum, Dead Poets Society