09 July 2017

The Teacher's Summer Bucket List

If you're a teacher, chances are summer is your favorite season. Yes, we all love our jobs and working with the kids that we do, but it's also a big relief when the year is over. I don't know about you, but for me it's a time to recuperate, refresh and revitalize myself for the coming school year. I know most teachers do school work during the summer, so I've made a list of things to do during the summer INSTEAD so that you can truly be at your best when it's time to head back.

1. Get a massage.
I know that I can get SUPER stressed during the school year as I imagine most other teachers do as well. I HIGHLY recommend splurging and finding a good masseuse in your area. I tend to get especially tight in my neck and shoulders and love a good deep tissue massage. Heaven!!! Trust me, you will not regret it.

2. Have an entire day that you do not change out of your pajamas and you just Netflix binge.
Some of you may already do this all the time, but there are a lot of teachers who feel guilty on days when they do nothing. I say forget it! Chill, relax, binge. You deserve it! (I do recommend The Walking Dead, The Unbelievable Kimmy Schmidt, Orange is the New Black, and Stranger Things.)

3. Make a must-read list of at least 5-10 good books that you've been meaning to read and devour them.
Or maybe even a better idea, grab a few of your teacher buddies and start a book club. One of my fellow teacher buddies and I did just that last summer. We've been meeting (about 5 of us) once a month for the last year. Each time we rotate who hosts. That person chooses the book. We actually sit and talk about the book for probably about 20 minutes and then just talk, eat, drink, and play games for the other 2 or 3 hours, but it makes for a really fun night. Some of my favorite books in the last couple months have been: A Man Called Ove, anything by Karin Slaughter, Ugly Love (and other Colleen Hoover books) and so many more I can't even remember. I also recommend checking out the website Good Reads for recommendations, reviews, and ratings!

4. Go on a vacation (even if it's in your own backyard).
Even if you can't afford a full out vacation (cause c'mon we're teachers here, let's get real) it's always relaxing and inspiring just to even get away for a day or two. Plan a short weekend trip somewhere within a few hours of where you live. Even if you can't afford to do that, at least Google some fun things within an hour or so around your house that you've never done. Sometimes those little gems are so overlooked! You might be surprised what is in your own backyard.

5. Check out an amusement park or water park.
I will admit I am a total chicken and did not ride my first roller coaster until 2 summers ago...and you know what? I kinda liked it. If you're from the Pittsburgh area you grew up with Kennywood. It's an old-time roller coaster park that helped revolutionize coasters of today. I didn't attempt the big, crazy fast one yet (80 MPH at like 300 ft? ehhhhhh maybe not yet) but I did love the Racer, Jack Rabbit, and the Thunderbolt (all older wooden coasters that aren't quite as high or fast, but still pack a fun punch). On the other hand, I'm a HUUUUUUGE water park fan. Our nearby one (Sandcastle) has some really fun rides and I don't get there as often as I used to a few years ago, but it's one thing I love to do every summer!)

6.Spend as much time as possible with your babies (whether they be human or furry)
Personally, I do not have any children (of the human variety) but I do have a dog and 2 cats who I consider my babies. I try to give them as much attention as possible during the summer. I take my dog out for walks almost daily, take him for car rides when I can, take him for ice cream when we go, etc. (He's so spoiled!!!) We don't try to do it, but our pets and kids don't get quite as much attention from us during the school year as we'd like to give them, so make sure you do as much as possible while you're off. They'll be thankful for the time and memories.

Finally, I'd like to finish by saying you all rock and deserve to let yourself relax in the summer. We have a very hard job that is incredibly demanding. Allow yourself to take the time off and forget about all school related things for awhile. It will still be there when you come back. Your brain, body, and family will thank you.

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