Friday, January 2, 2015

Welcome to 2015!

Happy New Year to everyone! I hope that all of you enjoyed the holiday celebrations and rang in 2015 in whatever way you wanted.

The past two months have been rather crazy, as the holidays often are. B and I spent Christmas in the US with my family, which was lovely after we actually got there - there are no direct flights to anywhere in North Carolina, so the trip usually takes between 14-16 hours because of connections. This time, between cancelled and rerouted flights, it took us close to 38 hours before we made it to my parents' house. Needless to say, I was a mess by the time we got there. Luckily, B is wonderful and called the airline to insist that since we lost a day, we should be able to push our flight back by a day (which they did). So we were still able to spend 6 days shopping for things I can't get here visiting with family.

My family also decided, around mid-November, to do 'creative' gifts, as several people's budgets are tight. For me, of course, that meant crocheting something for everyone. So in the space of about 2 months, I finished two baby blankets and cranked out five scarves/cowls - a personal record, and one of the cowls was even for me (!), so for the first time I am actually wearing one of my own creations (usually knowing that I need to give projects away is the only way I can motivate myself to finish them). Unfortunately in my haste to gift things, I failed to get pictures of several of them.

I can only hope that my productivity streak continues, but it's unlikely to throughout 2015. That's because (drum roll...) at the end of February, I am increasing my teaching hours! I will add a biology course and 2 math classes to my 2 current biology courses at the high school. I am super excited and slightly nervous. I have been teaching for only about 6 weeks and so far, I love it. The students are great (mostly - they are teenagers), and the other teachers have been amazing as well - encouraging, open, and patient. All of which I much appreciate. While I may know biology and have years of experience teaching teenagers in some capacity, this is my first time as an 'official' teacher. Perhaps not coincidentally, the part where I feel the most in the weeds is assigning grades (the first of which are due next week - no pressure!). The Swiss system is quite different from the American one that I know, but it is additionally complicated for me because I am assigning points via the British system. Basically, there are a lot of countries' education systems involved and I'm still learning to balance them.

My 2-year anniversary in Switzerland is fast approaching - two weeks! The new year has already got me feeling introspective and reflective, but I'm sure I'll get over it. Meanwhile, I'm hoping that among my increased hours I will find time to get back into German lessons, as the language continues to be the one aspect of my life here that I am seriously dissatisfied with. I'm not sure it's a 'resolution' as much as 'I live here so this needs to happen' idea.

I hope to post crochet pictures soon, as well as share some of the many stories that have emerged from my new job. Meanwhile, best wishes to all of you in 2015! Love to all my family and friends throughout the world - hope to see many of you this year!


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