Random mix of news

A lot of little things happen that I don't usually find the time to sit down and blog about....but here are a few.

Actually, this is kind of big for me.  I have decided to stop using my phone while I drive.  I had gotten really terrible at using the phone all of the time while I drive.  It was to the point that if I didn't have my phone in my lap or in my hand as I drove, I felt like something was missing.  I use What's App to keep in touch with my besties at home and I used it ALL of the time when I drove.  I even got pulled over a few weeks ago for talking on the phone and almost got a $100 ticket. I am embarrassed to admit,  it didn't change my behavior.   I just put down the phone when I saw police officers near by.  One of my best friend's inspired me to put an end to my dangerous behavior.   She sent me this clip (https://youtu.be/OVnRcIXEqaU).  It still gives me chills.   Also, I sometimes follow the blog Momastery (Random aside- the author of this blog went to college with me at JMU.  I didnt' know her very well...but didn't like her because she was very close with my boyfriend at the time.  Now, I LOVE her.   Great blog).   Anyway, she saw the same add and posted the following on facebook:

Can I have a minute of your time? It’s important. It’s about cell phones and driving. There’s a commercial making the rounds about this that I’m not going to post in case it’s triggering- but I need to say this: I’m scared, you guys.
Every time I’m out on the road I see driver after driver sneaking peeks at their phones. I do it, too. I peek. I love my family so hard and so well and so deep and then when I have them in the riskiest, most vulnerable space they’re in all day- on the road- I take ridiculous risks. My friends tell me they do the same thing. You guys: We are addicted. We are. Only people who are addicted to something will put the safety of people they love in danger again and again to get a fix. It’s so dangerous. It’s so freaking dangerous. GOOD people like you and me are killing their families. Killing strangers. The statistics are terrifying. They didn’t think it would be them. None of them thought that it would be them who caused the wreck they can never, ever take back.
Craig and I talked last week about cell phones and driving. I told him how close to impossible it would be for me to forgive him if something ever happened to our children because he was looking at his phone. An accident is an accident- but texting and driving (or "checking" and driving) is no accident. I was just being honest. He said he felt the same way. So we wrote up a contract to protect ourselves from our own compulsivity and curiosity and human nature. We wrote up a contract to protect ourselves, our marriage, our children, and other people’s children.
The contract says that we will put our cell phones in the glove compartment as soon as we get into the car. We won’t get them out until the car is parked at our destination. There will be no exceptions to this rule. Then we called a family meeting to explain this family rule to the kids. We want to be accountable to everyone in the family and we want our kids to understand how seriously we are taking this issue. Chase will be driving in a few years. Can you imagine how impossible it will be to make sure his phone’s away and his mind is on the road if he hasn’t seen that modeled by us? Now is the time. If we want our kids to control themselves we have got to control ourselves first.
You guys, make your own agreement. Making sensible family rules around cell phones and driving is a way to love yourself, your marriage, your children and the world well. Do it, you guys. Do it tonight. Love you.

I am committed to not use my phone anymore as I drive.  I made a deal with Warren that we won't use it at all and keep it in the glove box.  I told the kids and they love being in charge of the phone now.  They hold me accountable.   It has been really hard.  There are so many urges to check.  Thank goodness the phone is out of reach!   It has only been 6 days but I know I will keep this up.

Teacher Appreciation
Two weeks ago the PTFA appreciated the teachers at the girls' school.   This seems like a normal thing in the states, but as far as I can tell it is the first time it's happened here.   Teacher Appreciation days/events/ weeks, etc.  definitely feels like an American thing.   Funny how you don't realize that until you move away.   We provided a big "morning tea" and candy with cute sayings for all of the teachers.  They loved it and hopefully felt an ounce of the appreciation so many teachers in the states receive.

New building 
Last week a huge, really nice new building opened up at the girls' school.  It is such a nice building and allows for more space at the school.   There is a new library, new offices, amphitheater, etc.  There was an amazing performance before the opening put on by all of the students.  I sat in the audience feeling so proud that my kids go to this school where there is such an emphasis on art and creativity.   After the performance, there was a reception.  At 1:30 in the afternoon, during the school day, there was a reception for all parents and teachers with ALCOHOL!  This is something I would never see in the states!  Yes, when I worked in a majorily progressive school district, the PTA put on a happy hour for the teachers...but it was after school!    To be fair, the teachers were asked not to drink until after their students left the building (2:30).      But I assure you, plenty of parents were enjoying their wine!   Hey, it was a celebration right!?

Fun Weekend
This last weekend included so many fun activities which I mentioned in my last blog post.   One of the things I forgot to mention is I went on a long run (like I do every Saturday morning).  My friend and I ran 20k/12 miles in preparation for the Suva half marathon next weekend.  (I just went and paid for my registration for the half and it was $5 USD!!! )  I LOVE having a running buddy.  I can honestly say that some of my very closest friends are the friends I run with.   There is something about running a long run with someone.  It just allows for uninterrupted, one on one, quality conversation.   When your feet are hitting the pavement, you are moving forward...and you just simply connect with another human being...on many levels.  For me, it is harder to sit across a cup of coffee or wine and talk with the same depth.   I am so grateful to have Wendy, my running buddy here, and grateful for all my running buddies in the past.

We also went to Wendy's daughter's farm-themed birthday party.  Andie, my little naturalist/animal-lover was definitely in her happy place!

I cannot help but post a picture of the rainbow I aw this morning!   So cool!   Too bad the girls were such a rush to make the bus I don't even know if they saw it....   

I have waited until everything was official to post about this....but it's official now!  I HAVE A JOB!!!   Tomorrow I will start as the primary school counselor at International School Suva (the girls' school).   I will only be working one day a week, but I will be doing something I love and feel passionate about.    I've been feeling a bit mopey lately, and  I truly believe that putting my skills to good use will help me and others.  I am beyond excited about this opportunity and am so grateful I was able to secure a work permit!   


  1. Congratulations on the job, Kate!! Thrilled you were able to make it work, and excited for the school to have a primary counselor! Bravo for pulling all the pieces together!


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