Instead I Pour the Milk*

You know how to solve the problem of being able to fall asleep at night? Work your butt off moving everything around your classroom into five different places and running around like a chicken with your head cut off, run about a million errands after school, where you realize they must have closed the other office supply place so you end up in a Walmart of all places, which means going in the wrong door and walking past ALL the things to find post-its for today but NOT the printer cartridge, but that’s OK because after your chiropractor puts everything, including your ears, back where it belongs, you kamikaze through your other favorite place, Costco, where you find the printer cartridge, and then come home and attempt to get off the couch for a while before making dinner and then quilting for 3 hours. Oh yeah! Damn! Gotta go to bed because the alarm goes off too early. And yet, I was awake when it went off, going over today’s lesson in my head, step by step, even though I’ve done it before.

Fell asleep just fine. Exhaustion has its pros.

Today is the first official day with kids in the room…the new sweethearts who will be in my dreams (and nightmares) for the next 10 months, the names I need to learn, personalities to negotiate, grades I hate the grading stuff. All the paperwork and the meetings and the crazy schedule stuff that started yesterday with my co-teacher, trying to balance our classes. We did it. Someone will fuck it up for us soon, but we started balanced for once.

Anyway. It’s the first day of my 16th year of teaching. Must be old.

Did I quilt yesterday? Damn straight I did. I’m gonna knock this thing outta the park. Here’s face number one…I think I did them all upside down.

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Kitten communing with my chair. She just wants to be wherever I am.

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Face (and body) number 2…still upside down. It’s because the majority of the quilt is quilted and in my way, won’t fit under the machine, so I’m trying to get enough space to actually quilt. Yes, I quilt with a regular home sewing machine…so everything has to fit in there, under the arm.

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Kitten side eye. She chirped at me, so I photographed her. Not sure that’s what she wanted.

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Face number 3. Still upside down. Body too.

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I guess I did these two upright. But they’re small.

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So everything on the hill and in the water is done…all I have left is the two large tree women at the top and then filling in the empty space. I quilted for almost three hours yesterday…I’m up over 9 hours so far, so I don’t think it will be 20 hours after all. I think binding purchase on Friday is totally in the cards. Get the binding sewn on by machine on Saturday, start the hand work. Ready to hand off to the photographer by next Friday. No problem. Ugh. So tired right now. But motivated!

The man is in Sweden in some tiny village, and he sent me the local yarn bomb, although they apparently call it guerilla knitting. I’ve heard that before too. Theirs is pretty fancy though…

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Possibly his absence is why I’m getting a lot done? Or not. It would be nice to have someone else cook…wait…I think that’s happening tonight. So that’s cool.

OK, so progress made, it continues, off to the day job, wish me luck, I’m about to mutilate 145 or so names. Because even if you look at the list and think, oh that’s easy, it’s Jonathan, I’ll be OK with that one, then there are either two of them with unpronounceable last names or he doesn’t go by Jonathan any more, now he’s something you’re never going to remember. Some kids just don’t look like their names. It’s weird. A product of way too many years of teaching, I think.

More caffeine.

*Suzanne Vega, Tom’s Diner

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