Leanne Nalani

{April 29, 2014}   Sometimes You Just Need a Walk in the Park

Coming into the week I was well aware that Tuesday was going to be busy. Turns out Monday was, too. It’s that time of the school year when everything picks up speed until June and then it all abruptly ends.

It’s also week 2 back to healthy living. Even though Sunday was a treat day I feel somewhat guilty for eating probably 1,000 calories over my normal allowance. It’s not like I was gorging myself, it just worked out that way with the family BBQ. Saturday should shed some light on whether a treat day like that is ok.

Back to today. Day in the life, if you will:

Started the day with Advisory, approximately 20 students working on their language arts assignments and me checking in with kids on their report card grades in order for them to make concrete plans for getting their grades up. And so I have some insight when I call all their parents. The last 5 minutes I remember that I haven’t eaten breakfast and stuff a granola bar in my face as quickly as possible.

2nd period starts and I teach my 105 minute class. All goes well but I’m nervous because my boss is coming in to observe. It’s evaluation season. After she leaves there’s a very odd blowout with a student who has his phone out. I politely tell him to put it away – He gets upset and decides he is going to storm out of the room to go give his phone to the office which is something that never happens. No student voluntarily gives their cell phone to the office. Except this kid. After that he is the perfect angel. Ummmm, ok…

4th period is planning. Snack to keep brain working. Phone calls home to parents. A good deal of disconnected phones. There are also two meetings scheduled this period. I am able to postpone the first one but the parent for the second one no-shows. Luckily the team still meets but our interpreter has a hard time getting ahold of the parent by phone. We try to see if his counselor can join us, too. Then I run around campus looking for the student but he is out and about because he’s in photography and they don’t stay in one classroom. We find him eventually and bring him in for a productive conversation.

Lunch. The first time to sit back, relax, and socialize with other adults. My brain is kind of in chaos so I don’t think much about food or notice that I’m eating it.

6th period is AP Lit with the juniors and seniors in another teacher’s classroom. I help support special ed students in this class because we have “AP for All” which I disagree with but whatever. I get pulled off track and end up back in my own classroom at one point doing a bunch of paperwork. Yay!

After school I have another meeting scheduled with another parent and student but the parent calls another teacher elsewhere on campus to tell us that she’s running late because she needs to get to the next bus connection. Teachers meet and talk a bit while waiting a half-hour. Then she calls that same teacher (who’s not at the meeting) again to say she’s still waiting for the bus but wants to phone conference. Her phone is on silent when I call so I leave a forever-long message. She calls back 10 minutes later and we conference an hour after the scheduled meeting.

Day over. Tired. And this is where the park comes in. It’s normally a strength day but I wasn’t feeling it. With the strong need to decompress and it being a gorgeous day outside, Mike and I went for a walk in the park with Loki.

photo (11)Ducklings! So cute! The mom was pissed at me for getting close and even those four geese in the back started coming toward us.

Loki got all muddy so I gave him a bath while Mike cooked up some Costco cedar plank salmon. That stuff is good.

photo (10)

I’m proud of myself for not letting all the tasks of the day overwhelm me too much. Stress sometimes causes eating junk and that definitely didn’t happen. I’m still staying motivated. Although I skipped strength training, I needed to take care of myself and that walk in the park is just what the doctor ordered. Tomorrow is my normal rest day but instead I will do the strength training. I got in my 8,000 steps, ate well, and drank plenty of water.

Now I’m enjoying the rest of the warm evening watching The Guild and blogging. Is it bed time yet?

*How do you handle busy days?


I feel stressed and exhausted just reading that. I don’t actually handle busy days very well – I am in the routine of exercising after work, no matter what – and that really helps with stress release. I think walking in the park is a great idea. Sometimes I write a list during the day, of things I need to do that night. That way I can forget about them until later.

I also exercise after work. Sometimes I’ll get home so cranky but Zumba helps a lot. Do you keep your to do list on your phone?

Apparently now I shoot things with a bow! Really? Costco salmon and good do not belong in the same sentence! Tisk tisk! I’ll bring you a real fillet this summer!

Haven’t you been shooting a bow for a while, now?

Now, now sis – The rest of us common folk gotta purchase our salmon from a store. 😉 But yeah, if I can hit you up for a fresh-caught filet, I’ll take it!

Tara Jane says:

Yum that salmon looks incredible. I don’t really enjoy cooking salmon at home (have only really used it in a stirfry) but maybe I should give it another go. Sounds like your day was big and busy – but good job for handling it well.

i’m the list maker when it comes to busy days, often breaking jobs down into half an hour blocks. I felt really stressed the other day at work and I went and did a bunch of cardio as well so it seems that the doctor ordered the same thing for the both of us! Hope the rest of your week is a little less intense 🙂

Taking things a half hour at a time sounds like a good idea. I’m also a list maker. I have lists in my work planner and lists in my phone. It feels good to check things off after they’re done. Cardio seems to be a great de-stressor! Thank you for the well wishes. I think things will be winding down tomorrow a bit and hopefully next week.

Sounds like you had a couple of busy days like I did. Parents and people in the community think that we wind down this time of year of the year. They just don’t get it.

I think the teaching profession is one of those careers that people have to spend a whole day doing in order to know what it’s really like. For instance, the last week of school we have some senior student volunteers come in to lead our freshmen all day for 4-5 days in special activities. By the end of the first day they look like they are about to die.

j!b says:

Oh my.. I got tired just reading about your day! Sounds extremely busy and I’m glad that you didn’t give into the junk food. But make sure you’re fueling your body 🙂
The walk in the park sounds so relaxing and was definitely a better choice over the strength training.
When I’m stressed I eat comfort food… dark chocolate, fried potatoes.. surprisingly I was really stressed this past Monday and didn’t give into any of my usual comfort food.

Oh yeah I forgot to write in there that I got home from work and ate a banana before going on our walk. I needed something and that always seems to be the perfect little snack.

Good for you for not giving in to comfort food when you were stressed! The hardest thing is when the cravings hit on a really stressful day because then it’s already engrained in your mind.

That salmon looks delicious! A walk in the park sounds like the perfect way to deal with that crazy day and much healthier than stress eating. Good for you!

Thanks, it felt really good! I barely burned anything but it was such a beautiful day and we were out enjoying the sun with the dog, so that mattered more.

Good for you for keeping yourself balanced. I got stressed out just reading that. Sometimes pissing off ducks is just what the doctor ordered 😉

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