Tag Archives: new

Brand Spanking New: SOLC #5

As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, today was the day to head to the university to get a tour of our new offices and get keys. We’ve been watching the building emerge from what was formerly a parking lot for a couple of years now. Deep holes and mounds of dirt have been replaced by shiny glass and modern lines. This multi-use space includes offices, meeting spaces, retail, restaurants, and student housing along with underground parking. While we all worked from home, construction continued and the building has come in pretty much on time.

A pandemic opening is a bit strange. We’ve all been invited in two or three at a time to be introduced to our new spaces. So instead of a busy, buzzing space, things were quiet today. And that seemed perfect. After a grand tour of all the offices and working spaces, Angela and I got a closer look at our writing project’s spaces. We puttered around a bit, getting a feel for the layout and began to organize and unpack a few boxes.

As a writing project, we’ve moved a number of times. The first place I remember was a portable building outside the Teacher Education Program building. When that building was demolished to make room for new construction, we moved into an old building in another part of campus, this time moving in with CREATE, our current (and forever) home department. When that building was razed to make room for yet more new construction (are you seeing a pattern here?), we moved to our more recent space–an old science building renamed to fit its new occupants–the Social Science Research Building. That place has been home for more than a decade, a place for meetings, for conversations with colleagues, and for all the “stuff” that accumulates from our work with teachers and students.

Even when we packed all our belongings in the fall, the move to a new space still didn’t seem real. We’d heard all about windows that opened, space for the entire CREATE family all in the same building, conference rooms and parking (I’ll still believe in its ampleness only when I get to experience available parking spaces once folks come back to school and work!).

But today…these new offices became real. And they feel just right. They are fresh and clean, even while piled with boxes and books that need putting away. They feel like a the promise of a bright future, a place to envision new ways to support teachers and students. A place to build on a more than 40 year history of successful professional development. I can do my work from home, but I am feeling excited about heading back to the university. To my brand spanking new office, to collaborations with my colleagues, to informal conversations in the common spaces, to a post-pandemic work life. Now, to get back in there and get those boxes unpacked! (And I’m pretty excited about having a window that opens…and a bit of a view!)

SOLC Day 24: Something New

Our beaches closed today. A stern response to a sunny weekend where social distancing seemed to be a fantasy to many–they were imagining Spring Break instead. The state, the city, the county came down hard. Beaches, parks and trails are closed. Stay home. Walk in your neighborhood. Get serious about fighting this virus.

I saw it coming, but it didn’t make it less painful. But luckily for me, a new toy…or tool arrived in the mail yesterday. And after a long day of remote learning for me and teleconferencing for my husband, we cut the straps on that big box and began the assembly.

My role when it comes to putting things together is to organize the pieces, get rid of the packaging, and prepare to hand out the nuts and bolts and screws and pieces. And after about an hour, voila, we now have a stationary bike!

My preference for exercise is always to be outdoors. Walking and hiking are my activities of choice. And the beach is my number 1. But for the immediate future, I’ll be pedaling. I did get up early and walk the neighborhood this morning. And I tried the bike this afternoon…with my kindle in hand. I read and pedaled. It’s not the beach…but, oh well, sometimes you have to change your behavior for the public good.

New Year, New Eyes

There’s lots of cliches about the New Year…resolution making, retrospectives on the year that passed, champagne at midnight, polar bear plunges on New Year’s day, and so many more.

And somehow, there is something about a new number for the year that encourages the idea of fresh starts, new habits…and maybe a new way of seeing the world.  I got ready for my new year by heading up to our local mountains for a rare…and wonderful snowy day.  You might remember last week that I said it never snows where I live.  Well, that is still true, it didn’t snow in most of San Diego…but we did get enough snow in the mountains and surrounding foothills to create a winter wonderland.

For someone who seldom sees snow, this was a treat!  The world looks entirely different when covered in a layer of white.

snowy trees

Even the familiar…dandelions and native plants take on new dimensions against a snowy backdrop.

dandelions in the snow

frozen flowers

And we couldn’t resist the urge to build a snowman…even if it was a miniature version!

snowman building

I love the way snow creates a quiet space, there is a sense of a hush and opportunity for reflection and introspection.

in the snow

Maybe that’s what the cows were thinking (although this was later in the day after lots of snow had melted…and at a lower elevation)!

cows and snow

I’m sure I’m not going to be able to depend on snow to give me new eyes to view my life this year.  But maybe a ride high above the ground will help…like in these skyfari buckets at the zoo!


But mostly, I know, I will need to stay on the lookout for new ways to see what is most familiar to me.  I couldn’t resist this shot of three seagulls as I walked to the parking lot at our local beach…seeing with new eyes in the new year!

3 seagulls

What will you see this year as you look with new eyes?