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Let's see how this goes...

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So…in the perfect world in my head, I am going to write more regularly.

Nothing major, just what’s going on in the world of a full-time uni student who also teaches a few different ways part-time(English online, various other subjects as a sub, but especially world languages, yoga, paddleboard, nutrition) sings professionally occasionally, is involved in applicable organizations on campus, and tries to maintain some kind of life-balance in the realm of domestic life, marriage, schoolwork, work, and self-care.

I hope that last long sentence didn’t exhaust you.

If you live in the United States in today’s world, it probably looks pretty normal.

But anyway, what DOES it look like for a former full-time fitness professional and former full-time performer, when they decide to embark on a third career, and go back to school for a 2nd Bachelor’s degree (followed by a Master’s degree, if all goes according to plan)?

Well, I can tell you this. I am certainly not living the perfectly balanced lifestyle filled with green juices and unlimited flexibility that I think some still imagine of me (which fyi, was never my full reality even back in the day, though I certainly made an effort).

In the perfect world in my head, these entries will reflect what that can look like, weekly—but let’s be real. This might be the only one.

And they may be reaallly boring. If I had been writing them this summer, you would have seen a lot of “at night we watched House”—because that is what this summer’s chill out as a married couple was, most of the time. My husband finally got me hooked.

We finished the series just as the semester started.

We both went through a little withdrawal.

If you missed the last blog/newsletter, you can find that here—though it did not have the update it was originally going to—so if you want to know about what I did this summer, reply to this in some form or fashion, and I will send you the copy/paste of what did NOT go out (for various reasons that I can explain then).

So now that we have set this up---here’s the happenings of last week-


It’s going pretty well. Week 3 is still not fully “the norm”, but closer. My favorite class is Italian. Gosh, I have missed it! The very sound of it makes my heart sing. No joke. I guess it’s because when I first started learning, many years ago, I was in a vulnerable emotional place and lived with a family who was the embodiment of a cultural hug, and it has touched me to this day.

I really like 2 of my other 3 classes. One of them is an Art History class that I chose to take for the amount of focus it has in Italy, so it can be applied to my personalized Italian studies minor. I am loving the material, but we have only just now submitted our first assignment, and it was a doozy. We will see how the grading goes, and I might know better what to expect in the future.

The other class that I really like is an education certification class about Classroom management and Assessment—

I KNOW. I am shocked, too. The title doesn’t lend itself to skyrocketing joy, does it? But the textbook is very relatable and FUNNY (there are cartoons, and it is clear the author has BEEN THERE), and our teacher is very real. I actually think that I am learning something useful, and it excites me! (I did not buy it from Amazon, but from my school bookstore, which was surprisingly inexpensive. It is out of stock on Chegg. com as of this writing. Just sharing the amazon link for reference)

The last class is another educational cert class about School and Society. It started off nicely with some discussion boards and a viewing of Mr. Holland’s Opus, but the textbook is as dry as a bone. We have our first paper due this week, and I am choosing to trust in the Lord as I approach it. I’ll just leave it at that. (The teacher is nice, though!)


I teach online 3 to 4 mornings per week, getting up at 5am. I am usually finished by about 8:15am. I have also started accepting some subbing opportunities for the semester—the stress with that sometimes is not knowing what coursework will be like I a future week, and whether or not accepting one job now means I won’t have time later to accept a job in the same week that I would be better suited for—I do have to balance it all out, and I can’t just accept everything. I teach at schools as close as 15 minutes from my house and as far away as 70 minutes from my house—so I have to weigh the drive time and gas costs as well…and the exhaustion. There are some subjects I just won’t sub for anymore because I know it will pull more from me (physically, mentally, and financially) than it will give. I am aiming to sub once per week, though, if possible, and I only have medical insurance when I sub in certain places, so I have to keep those up a few times per month at least. And I do like to support my colleagues! It’s also good practice.

This last week in my online classes I had some very joyful, fun moments with my kiddos (both regular students and students I will only see once), and frustrating moments—and isn’t that pretty much a good description of teaching?


I have never been one to enjoy doing the same thing every day; I like variety. I don’t mind alternating between a few things, though. Just depends on the season. The season I have been in for awhile now is one where I need to concentrate on anti-inflammatory types of movement and nutrition. Having had a previous back injury (not to mention assorted not-serious injures as a professional singer-dancer) and a bout or two with adrenal burnout, and being in the season of life that I am in physically, my focus is on preventing further injury or strain, decreasing inflammation, maintaining and creating more mobility, and challenging myself enough to feel alive and grow while at the same time not doing so much that I can do nothing later in the day.

Anyone get all that?


But really—I always felt like if I have been a good yoga teacher, it was because I could really empathize with my students. When they told me what was feeling strange in their bodies, I could see it and feel it in my mind. My injuries have been a great teacher, and somehow, I also just had a mind that could see things.

That said, as a full-time student who spends a lot of time sitting while doing homework (though I am currently standing at my sit-stand desk and have been all afternoon) and sitting while driving to campus (a 2.5 hour commute round-trip), the back stiffness and hip tightness is very real.

Not only that, but NOT doing as much yoga as I used to has opened my eyes in so many moments, about poses that I used to think were so basic. They felt good, but I wondered sometimes in class if they were doing anything for anyone, etc…and I can tell you now:

Some of those things that you might feel like skipping over (and skipping sometimes is no biggie) are so foundational to good daily mobility, that if you don’t do them for awhile, your body will inform you. Both in your practice and out of it. Man oh man.

ANYWAY- last week’s movement choices:

Some walking and yoga on my own (including a quiet yoga session on a pontoon boat on Thursday that was needed desperately). I did a youtube yoga sesh from Eoin Finn (it’s not a full class, but I finished what he started and rounded it on my own). The sample workout from the 4 Weeks for Everybody Super Block (it is geared to be be anti-inflammatory) on BODi that is happening this month. (I have not signed up for the Super Block, but I will eventually. I DID order the Gut Protocol cookbook, though, and I have been getting my grocery ducks in a row to use it! Already tried the banana mug cake recipe. Yum.) I also continued the Barre Blend Super Block that I DID sign up for last month but needed to take a break from (it is great for certain things, and I will write more about that another day!)—and I tried out my new Pilates Bar that I bought from Amazon. (I saw the same one many of you have seen on social media, but I am on a BUDGET. So, I looked at several on Amazon—there are several like that famous one—and chose this one. I am sure the others are good, too). Anyway, while it does come with a chart of movements, I also did a search on youtube for videos to use with it, and I found many! This is the first one I did. I liked it a lot, though I did wish she would give people more safety instruction regarding protecting the knees/ligaments around the knees.

I have been experimenting with bread recipes in our bread machine using “00” flour. I won’t go into all the details with that, but just know that it comes about from not having as many digestive issues in Europe despite eating wheat products, which I typically avoid here in the U.S. most of the time. Like, I was having a slice of bread every morning as part of my breakfast. I do take a supportive supplement (Triphala- it’s Ayurvedic), and I took it in Europe---but I have friends and acquaintances who would attest with me—and I have been saying it for years---the wheat is different. So anyway—maybe a blog for another day.

The hubster cooked a bunch of protein last weekend and grilled a bunch of veg, so part of our healthy meals this week was already done. Wahoo! I made some homemade hummus. He is also a darling and occasionally fixes us each a Spritz Aperol, which we fell in love with after our recent trip in Italy. Which leads to…

Domestic Life:

My hubby worked hard as always, even on a holiday, and then took care of things around the house like fixing this or that, feeding the cats, taking out the recycling and mowing the yard. He has gotten into a language app where we get to connect as partners sometimes, and that has been really fun. We have been watching the old batman movies one at a time recently (took the place of House), but last night he suggested we watch the movie, “Greater”, and it was SO. GOOD. I highly recommend!!!

The cats are goofy and sweet as always. Grumples went to the vet this week for some immune-supportive shots (hubby took him—another wonderful thing!) Luckily he is the most chill cat when it comes to traveling in the car, so that was a breeze. I took a picture and video of him this week while he was doing his usual meditation-chillax by the water fountain. You can see that here.

I haven’t practiced my ukulele in sooo long, nor have I started a regular practice of the little parlor guitar I allowed myself to have last Spring. 2023 has been nutso. I do play my ukulele every time I teach online, though, so it is getting some use…just not growing. To everything a season!

Lastly, today I FINALLY got to wear the shirt I bought in Saint-Malo, France that is an example of traditional Malouin (a person from Saint-Malo) style. Since I am a female, today I was dressed “Malouine”. I also bought a skort on sale in one of the stores in the Intramuros as well, and wore it. Anyway, it was FINALLY cool enough that I wouldn’t swelter in it, so that little gift to myself brightened my morning as I headed in to church to sing, worship, and learn.

This week will be a busy one, once again. I am subbing two days this week (one of them is French!), and I have a French Club event to host, in addition to the usual classes, household stuff, and the paper that is due (eye roll).

But God has my back, my front, and sides, as always. I choose trust and joy. (And sometimes I take the time to put on fake eyelashes, too)

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