1.03.2017

Welcome, 2017!

While 2016 was satisfying for our family on so many fronts, I can't help but get excited about turning the page in 2017. This stems from nothing more than the urge to improve. Working in academia offers educators so many opportunities for renewal. Because of the evolutionary nature of information, progress, technology, and communication (among so many other critical domains), we always have something new and interesting to discuss. Because of the nature of new student groups, new teaching windows, and different teaching modalities, educators can always tweak things or add texts or revise materials. 

I do this for at least one class every year, and I'm excited to say that I am going to completely revise the materials for both American literature and technical writing in 2017. I am going to teach some different writing assignments, use some new technologies (spicy nodes and glogster), and bring some different texts into the fabric of what I'm doing with students. 

I am excited to coach Lyla's soccer team again this spring. After teaching a full night schedule at FSCJ and working Monday-Thursday from 4:30-10:00 p.m. (after looking after Luke all day), it will be a blessing to get back outdoors with the kids this spring. Children are filled with optimism, and I've been blessed to work with so many that are truly coachable. They can take criticism and they try hard, and that's all a coach can ask for...

I'm writing fiction again! I have been asked to contribute a pair of themed short stories in 2017, and I am working on another collection of short stories. What can I say, it's my favorite medium...

I am thrilled to be nearing the end of my work at UCF. I couldn't have picked a better program of study for the work I am doing at FSCJ, and I am very thankful for the help and guidance I've received in the last year in developing my dissertation...

In terms of sports, man...things can only get better. Let's go, Oregon. Let's go, Portland Trailblazers. Let's go, O's and Jags! C'mon, Knights! Let's go, Jumbo Shrimp (yep, that's our minor league team here in Jacksonville)...

I'm going to read more for pleasure this year. I'm going to cook and bake, and I'll have a few rounds in the 70s on the golf course. I'm going to help people when I can, and I'll be sure to ask for help when I need it on my end. This is how we make it--by relying on each other as members of a community.

I resolve to remain politically involved in where I live and how I live. I think now, more than ever, we have a real need to become monitoring citizens in this American democracy, and part of that is speaking out about issues that need to be addressed. The Rogerian compromise is something I see a lot of value in, and I plan to work hard to listen more and strive for compromise where possible.

Be well where you are, and best to you and yours in 2017. Make it a great year--a year of growth and renewal!

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