Holiday Coffee Share

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This is a busy week of holidays and family – for you too I am sure.

If we were having coffee I would tell you that I have had some heavy conversations this week. It comes with the time of year I suppose with the year end reflections. I am planning some big things for 2020 especially in the area of teaching. I am taking my strengths and running with them. Stay tuned for more details.

If were having coffee I would tell you I am going to stop trying to run at the dunes by myself. I am bombarded with memories I do not wish to relive when I am there by myself and I cannot do it anymore. I love the trees and the area but can no longer go there alone.

If we were having coffee I would tell you that I miss Amy Krouse Rosentahl. I loved her work. Here is a TED talk you need to watch.

Would you like a refill? Maybe some water?

If we were having coffee I would want to talk about New Year’s Eve parties — have you ever hosted one? A long time ago I wanted to have a heaven and hell party — decorate upstairs white and airy and the downstairs in black and red. If I were to throw a bash on New Year’s Eve, which I haven’t done in ages, who would I invite? I would want it to be a memorable evening.

Neil Gaiman — I love all his writing and would love to hear him talk. I wouldn’t mind a road trip with him either. He seems to have loads of stories to tell.

Kelly Link — Love her writing and would love to hear about her book seller days — past and present.

Matthew McConaughey —no explanation necessary

Hemingway — I want to hear the stories and find out which of his stories are his favorite.

Who would you invite? Would you have a theme?

If we were having coffee I would tell you I do not appreciate the non winter like weather. It is 51 degrees and there is no snow. It is not right.

If we were having coffee I would tell you I am exhausted. It has been a crazy week of activity. We went to the Kalahari water park resort for the holiday as part of the gifts for the kids. I was excited to ride the surf machine they have there. I did well but ended up doing a front flip which made everyone laugh. It was fun but I am glad to be home now.

If we were having coffee I would tell you the week between Christmas and New Year’s always seems strange. I forget which day it is and what I am supposed to be doing. I will be reading and writing and preparing for my self imposed 100 day challenge.A 100 Rejections ChallengeMy First 100 Day Challenge of 2020medium.com

If we were having coffee I would tell you I hope this past week was full of sparkly moments! I would love to hear about them and what is important to you this week.)

WRITTEN BY

Tammy Breitweiser

Tammy is force of nature; woman of honor; seer of nuance; ; & an accidental inspirationalist who writes. https://mailchi.mp/e19e03e6cd33/tammynews

Happy Christmas Eve!

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A Christmas Reflection

It is Christmas Eve.

When I was little the anticipation was for today at 6 pm. That time marked the ceremonial beginning of Christmas at my German grandmother’s. The record would play with the church bells ringing and Santa would arrive. We would hear his bells before we saw him. I vowed every year to remember to ask about Rudolph.

At Oma’s the feast was always the same: ham, her unique potato salad, vienna bread, lime sherbet punch, deviled eggs and a relish tray.

As we got older we couldn’t wait to leave the house to get there. I have no idea how slowly my dad drove to stall on the way there. Even as an adult there was magic for Christmas Eve and we always began at 6 p.m.

After she died in 2000 the holiday was never the same for me. It was not as magical. My mother did not have the ability to recreate the atmosphere nor did she want to. She changed the time, the menu and the schedule.

I thought I would never feel that magic again until a couple years ago I came home to the house decorated for the holiday, the fire roaring, food and drink made and I was transported back again thanks to my husband.

Sadly, the house we are in now does not yield the same hygge feeling. The people are the same but there is no fireplace. There is a different energy here. I do have my memories.

New Ways

The more I read about Finland, Sweden, Norway and Iceland I feel I would be comfortable there. A lifestyle of being outside in the snow, saunas, reading, and great coffee sounds perfect to me.

Next year I must remember to begin the Icelandic tradition of Jolabokafiod — the Christmas Book Flood. It is a tradition of giving books and chocolate to friends and family and to spend the day reading. The perfect way to spend the day in my opinion.

Today it is 51 degrees and there is no snow. There is no traditional menu tonight but I have books given to me by friends. I think a day of reading is the perfect way to spend today. Maybe I will take the kids to the used bookstore later to pick out a book or two to begin anew.

What book would you give this Christmas Eve?

Adventures

The sun sparkled in the sky yesterday, but the wind was biting.

The gym was the first stop. Car wash was the second. Third was a Greek diner in Hyde Park named Salonica.

The vegetable soup had more veggies than I could name in a Family Feud game. It was delicious and perfect.

The arc of the booth my husband and I sit in covers the faces of the friends that are meeting on the other side. It is the conversation of two friends that have reconnected in their old stomping grounds. One successful and one that doesn’t seem to know what to do with his life. There is polite conversation at first and then the obscenities of familiarity start rolling off the tongues. It a Greek restaurant and a comfortable space for me even though I have never seen this restaurant before today.

My Greek chicken with the secret spices and hint of lemon fills my belly and I am comfortably full this Wednesday afternoon. The half potato was seasoned with something I cannot place but went divinely with the meal. The broccoli was bright green and steamed, the cauliflower tender and firm, and the few slices of zucchini a hint of the season to come.

The man behind the counter spoke staccato English and was loud on the phone. He was squeezed behind a little counter with the olives for sale. There is little space in this city. Even the streets have bumper to bumper parked cars much like the traffic in the afternoon on Lake Shore Drive a stone’s throw away.

The fourth was Powell’s bookstore. I am lost among that stack of the books that smell like the houses of all the spaces they have occupied before settling in this in between space. I look for certain authors: Gaiman, Link, Chekhov, but my eyes wander to others. Then I see the red volume 2 inches thick that is the Bradbury 100.

Just when I think that my heart has swelled with as much book love as Powell’s has to offer I go through a narrow doorway to see a ceiling 8 feet taller with books and shelves reaching to the top of the space. There is a book about Alice in Wonderland and the oddities of Carroll titled The Raven and The Writing Desk. There are cookbooks, poetry , nature writing, and a small section of children’s books. I do not acquire many children’s books anymore. I love them, but they are lonely on my shelves with no eyes and laughter to stain their pages.


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My three book purchases will remind me of this day every time I open them. The ride home was quick with the toll road right there.

To think that trips to the city used to be a production full of planning. Chicago was always different than Indy that I knew well. Chicago used to require well planned out directions ahead of time.

I am comfortable in this neighborhood where University of Chicago students wander in and out of buildings. They are always walking somewhere important. There are two bookstores within 4 blocks of each other book ending restaurants, cafes, salons, beautiful homes, and dry cleaners. This is my kind of place!

What I Am Pondering…

Unfortunately, the picture above looks like my running trail now in December. We had some snowfall in November and now there is none. Yesterday it rained all day. Honestly, it is disappointing. I keep looking at the weather report in Minnesota with envy.

I am thinking about what is deeply nourishing to me and what has run its course and needs to be nixed. In simple terms what stays and what goes. I like to think of it sometimes in the realm of what do I say YES to and what do I say NO to.

Writing is deeply nourishing.

Talking with writers is deeply nourishing.

Coaching teachers and students is deeply nourishing.

Reading is nourishing in a diverse way. There is different reading for different purposes. Some types are more nourishing than others.

Thinking about what to get rid of completely in my life – physical and mental has been a process I have embarked on for the last couple of years.

I think the CONNECT word is good for me for 2019 especially in the realm of writing. It goes hand in hand with the readings and podcasts I have been inputting as well. I always love how these things I am thinking about converge together.

My thoughts are around how I can connect more with other writers, other teachers, and other coaches. I have some IRL opportunities were this is a real time of possibility and thriving.

What are you pondering?

BTW, I am reading an AMAZING BOOK! It is magical and wonderful.

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FMF: With

with
Today is the last FMF. See the link up here.

I sit at my desk with my coffee and think about this new season. Today is the Winter Solstice and the longest night of the year. It is also a Full Cold Moon tonight. I also read there is supposed to be a meteor shower early tomorrow morning just before dawn.

I carry a word with me throughout the year. I had thought it was to be YES for 2019 but the idea of connection has come up so much over the last cycle that I believe the word for 2019 is really CONNECT.

To connect to myself.

To connect with friends.

To connect more with my husband and children.

To connect to creativity.

To connect to the universe and my intuition.

This season is full of transition again for: an end and a beginning. Today I greeted the day in heavy darkness and rain. I would have preferred snow on this first day of winter but will appreciate the stillness and peace that came with the morning.

Whoo Hoo Wednesday!

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Today is a special shout out to two wonderful people in my life!

Leanne and Kristin are two ladies who are wonderful human beings and I am SO delighted and grateful they are part of my life! Through training and time this fall we have become so much more connected. They helped me realize I need more connection, not more walls. We have laughed and cried and learned together.

I love you both! Both are amazing educators and coaches and kids and teachers are lucky at the buildings where they are spreading joy and knowledge.

Weekend Coffee Share

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If we were having coffee I would encourage you to get the Caramel Brulee Latte. It is just sweet enough for a change. I will have one too and then switch back to strong black coffee.

If we were having coffee I would confess that my Christmas tree is not up yet. We debated whether to get a real tree or not this year. Last year we got a real tree which was beautiful but it did not smell at all. A tree is ordered and will show up on the doorstep by Wednesday. There are a couple other decorations up, but not many. As a gift, we received a faux fireplace cabinet which my hubby put together. The stockings are hung and I have several reindeer around the house.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I have been writing everyday but not finishing anything right now. I had a dinner with a couple ladies from my IRL writing group which was delightful. We write very different genres and types but we get along great. It is fun to talk about process.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you I have had the best time at work lately. I have been implementing the new ideas and learning from my week of professional development and have seen changes in attitude in teachers and their practice which of course effects students! It has been lovely to be able to follow a set of structures that are effective. I go back to training tomorrow and I am super excited about it. 

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I am climbing out of my reading slump. I am a little farther into the NINE PERFECT STRANGERS book and I love books with strong characters. The book is sucking me in and I am happy about it.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you I went Christmas shopping yesterday while my daughter was at gymnastics. It was early so there were not a lot of people. I was able to find what I was looking for and didn’t feel like I was supposed to be somewhere else. There were a lot less stresses than what I had last season and I am relieved about it. 

If we were having coffee, I would tell you I am looking forward to my holiday break starting at the end of the week. I am looking forward to my training tomorrow and the rest of the week at school!

What is inspiring you this week?