Rhiannon went back to work today after a couple of solid months off. I’m sure you know that teachers only work nine months a year (185 contracted days plus a few holidays minus some possible snow days, and you actually come in just shy of full months.) What I think that a lot of people assume is that this roughly translates into three months off each summer.
For teachers on a traditional calendar in our district, it works out to about two months off over summer (June and July), a week off in the fall and spring, and two weeks over summer. Note that as we are now firmly into the second day of August, it does in fact indicate that Rhiannon is back to work.
She’s changing to the third school of her career, and, when I consider the fact that I’ve had a grand total of two desk locations in the same building at my job, I can’t really empathize with having a “first day” feeling when performing approximately the same job.
This move is a little different in the fact that she’s transitioning to a middle school from an elementary, and as with any change, there are both good and bad points. The following are the early major home impacts that we’ve already identified.
Good: She’s going back to work and so is provided with a district laptop. Schools know that their employees take work home with them on a regular basis and provide accordingly. I don’t always like the fact that Rhiannon does need to work nights and weekends to get grading and planning done, but I do like the fact that it brings another computer back into the house.
For the past 6 weeks, we’ve been down to just two computers, and one of those is a little computer in the basement that drives our home theater. The second is a laptop usually sits on my desk and is attached to things like external hard drives and a second monitor. So it’s kind of a hybrid desk-lap/top and not always portable. Really, it takes at least 20 seconds to unplug it and start walking around. Unacceptable.
And so we were left without a permanently mobile computer floating around the house and there are times when one of those is vital. I mean, imagine a question with life-or-death significance arises and you find yourself with no easy means to query the vast knowledge of the internet. Perhaps a question like “Was the first commissioner of professional football really appointed in the 1920s?” I’m sure that you can now see how important some of these inquiries really are.
(No, the first official commissioner was named in 1941. Now you can rest easy at night.)
For a little bit, I thought we were going to have to get an iPad just to handle situations like this. Luckily, we survived the extreme depravation.
Bad: The new school starts just a little bit earlier than the old one and is a few miles farther away. While there is a small benefit in the fact that I can be around to help everyone get out the door and still make it to work on time myself, it also means that everyone gets up early.
I’m not going to complain about getting up before 5:00am, because I’ve done it before and it’s something we get used to after a little while. It will just require us going to bed at a decent time during the week. What I will complain about is the fact that it will get Brooklynn on a schedule where she wakes up around 6:00am everyday because that’s when we get her up.
She has transitioned into sleeping in until 7:00 or 8:00 each morning, which is really nice on the weekends when both of us can sleep in until she’s up and ready to go. Considering we're aiming at having dropped off at daycare a little before 7am on workdays (sorry, Jamie), we’ll also see how quickly she transitions to early mornings during the week.
This morning, I went to get her and found her still sound asleep and sans diaper. She has taken to sleeping curled up on her knees and her naked bottom was perched high in the air for all to see. Apparently, sometime in the night, her diaper either came loose of was removed by the baby and she went back to sleep. Luckily, it came off late enough in the night that she didn’t wet the bed. We had her dressed and downstairs with a cup of milk before she really knew what was even going on.
I can’t wait until Saturday when she decides that 5:30 in the morning would be a perfect time to have some breakfast as revenge.