Sunday, August 29, 2010

A Kindergarten Teacher's Sunday

As a kindergarten teacher, it's important to me to refresh and nourish myself on my days off so that I can offer myself fully to the students at school during the week.

So how did this kindergarten teacher recharge on  this Sunday?

I began as I do each morning with a period of mediation to clear my mind and set my outlook for the day. I enjoyed a pot of Pu’erh tea and a small bowl of Muesli for breakfast.

I joined my ukulele group to perform for the Community Church’s Sunday service. The congregation seemed to appreciate our music. They offered us plenty of appreciation over coffee in the courtyard after the service. Maybe we'll pick up a few new strummers.

 That's me in yellow to the rear of the group.

Home to start the laundry, to eat lunch, and to make play dough for the kindergarten class to use next week. Kneading play dough is good therapy, even for me. Why does it feel so good to knead dough?

Sarah took this photo just before launching.

For the best part of the afternoon, I paddled with Sarah the Russian River's beautiful waters. The Russian River is close to our home.

Dinner, a meeting nearby with friends who form the brain trust of Sarah’s campaign. We had a lively discussion.

Home once again to wind down the day and take a few minutes to reflect upon the day before turning in early to bed.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Feeling Gratitude

Last night I dreamed I was in the parking lot in front of my school. I was loading my car with treasures from home that I had brought to share with my students—fine silverware, china, paintings, sculptures, and musical instruments.

I’m not sure exactly what the dream means. I have brought stuff from home to my kindergarten, but typically what I bring are not treasures, but the opposite: old housewares we’ve upgraded. My best musical instruments mostly stay home.

I think the dream is telling me that my work at school is enriching me, that the emotional and spiritual investments that I’ve made in my career are paying dividends that I bring home with me.

The gratitude I feel for my life's work probably comes from walking by the Patrick Amiot sculpture honoring me as I enter and leave school each day.

I feel humbled and honored by it every day. I want to live out its meaning.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Pubbing It in Ireland

Here's a small taste of the late night musical magic we enjoyed in Ireland last week.

My nephew, Dan Gurney, is playing the accordion and his friend, Dylan Foley, is playing the fiddle. They're the young musicians nearest my camera  with their backs turned to me. Dylan and Dan are both from New York but are among the best Irish musicians in the world. The other players in this session are masters of the tradition.

This was Thursday night's session that went till about 1:30 in the morning.

The next night's festivities lasted until God knows how long, but very late. It included some fancy dancing by Nathan from Canada.

Monday, August 9, 2010


I'm in Ireland with Sarah and Jim and Jeanette, Dan and Dylan, having a blast. Here's just one photo of many.

We're having a blast.

More later...