"Our walls can't be breached." - Hector, from Troy (2004) In Homer's Iliad (or the movie, Troy, for those of you who prefer Hollywood to Greek classics), the city of Troy is besieged by a coalition of Greeks led by Agamemnon. The Greeks are trying to achieve the impossible feat of breaching the walls of … Continue reading The Walls of Troy
The first time my wife went on a road trip with my brother and me back in college, she was overwhelmed by all of the noise. It was our habit to blast alternative rock as loud as possible, sing along, and then engage in intermittent discussion without turning down the music. Sitting in the back … Continue reading The Noise
"The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul." - Psalm 23:1-2 (NIV) Back in the spring of 2015, I received a phone call from the headmaster of the most prestigious local private school, offering me the history teacher/department chair position. I had visited … Continue reading Green Pastures & Quiet Waters
Coffee is as good of a reason to get out of bed as any other. This is twice as true on a cold winter's morn. Bryan regrettably caste off the layers of heavy blankets as he pried himself away from the warmth of his wife's side. It would be an hour or so before Jillian … Continue reading A Week Before Christmas
It seems as if everyone wants something for nothing these days, regardless of age. Something For Nothing Some students want an "A", but they don't want to read, think, write, and reflect. Some parents want their children to be college-ready, but they don't want them to struggle and fail for a time to achieve academic … Continue reading Something For Nothing
During the past few weeks, my oldest son and I have incorporated a new tradition into his bedtime routine. After brushing his teeth, we head outside to see the moon and get a gift (typically a leaf, stick, or handful of grass) for Mommy. This we have been doing for sometime, but recently we added … Continue reading Snippets in Chalk
A picture's worth a thousand words, right? I can't argue too much with this statement. Many of my best memories have been captured on camera for me to relive when flipping (or clicking) through photo albums. So much goes down during special occasions that it is hard to remember it all. The holidays are no … Continue reading Thanksgiving Presence (As Opposed To Presents)
What separates the great and grateful From all of the irate and hateful Is that they don't deflate or take bull When others denigrate and say "fool" They choose to step off of their pedestal Take risks, adapt, and leave the wading pool They'll fail and grow, but the critics will be cruel They'll give … Continue reading The Frightful Flight of the Neophyte
First cold morning of the year Sitting by the fireside Flames cracklin' in my ear Thoughts that spread a mile wide The orange dancers dance away Doing the job of a thousand shrinks Calming the worries from yesterday Helping me work out all the kinks Something 'bout the focused heat Can't be achieved … Continue reading I Prefer The Fire
None of us want our children to fail. I hope my sons never get their heart broken by a girl. I hope they never get made fun of by their friends in a locker room after they fumble a football or miss a free throw. I hope that they never struggle while learning a subject … Continue reading Learning Through Failure
Go into the world and make a difference, they say Follow your passions and pursue them each day Step out of your comfort zone without much delay As long as you do this, everything will be okay But the reality is much different than this If you rock the boat, get ready for the … Continue reading Opposition To Change
This morning I woke up to the news that a gunman had opened fire on a concert in Las Vegas, killing 20 and injuring even more. As of right now, there are 50 dead and over 400 injured. My heart breaks for the victims and the families of the victims. Is it just me, or … Continue reading In The Midst Of The Storm
November in North Texas is a tad more intense than it is in the Hill Country. Pushing shopping carts for Walmart eight hours a day in the cold made this reality all the more apparent. Don't get me wrong. I was grateful for the $8/hour job because it was the only job at the time … Continue reading Drink Deeply From The Well
Do you feel worn out? I do. Last night I collapsed on the couch and struggled unsuccessfully to keep my eyes open as my wife and I shared stories from the day. I was mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually exhausted. It wasn't that I had endured the kind of stress and turmoil experienced recently in … Continue reading Wearing Yourself Out
As I was hanging off the edge of the Hilton in College Station, it struck me as weird that I was not afraid of the 110 feet between me and the ground. What I did fear was humiliation. I looked down and saw colleagues and students cheering me on as they live streamed my descent. … Continue reading Overcoming Your Fear
Today I will rappel off the side of the Hilton College Station as part of a United Way fundraiser for our community. I am stoked to have the chance to climb down the side of an 11-story building for free without having the police called on me, and I truly do not fear for my … Continue reading If This Was My Last Post
"THESE are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with … Continue reading Actions Speak Louder
via Daily Prompt: Recite The following is how I have been processing the events in Charlottesville through my lens as a social studies teacher. It seems like every time some national crisis involving race occurs, my email inbox and Twitter feed fill up with articles and curriculum designed to "help" students and teachers make sense … Continue reading Recite After Me… (Teaching About Charlottesville)
"I've heard a thousand stories of what they think you're like But I've heard the tender whispers of love in the dead of night." - "Good Good Father" by Chris Tomlin Today this song was played in church, and as tears welled up in my eyes, I was transported back to one of the most … Continue reading Microwave Prayers
"A man's steps are directed by the Lord. How then can anyone understand his own way?" - Proverbs 20:24 Over and over again I try to find my way and understand my purpose here on Earth. I do so to the point that I get caught up in the thoughts percolating within my own head. … Continue reading Finding Your Way
A throwback to our 2011 Thanksgiving experience in Africa.
Written By: Special Agent Jillian Leigh Hunt
To Recreate a Favorite American Holiday on the Other Side of the World.
Plan and Shop for all Necessary Supplies in Order to Cook a Traditional Thanksgiving Meal for Around (10) People.
Limited Budget, Non-Working Oven, Propane for Gas Stove Might or Might Not Last the Entire Day, Electricity Might or Might Not Stay on the Entire Day, Make Necessary Substitutions for American Ingredients Not Available in Uganda.
MENU: (3) Chickens, Stuffing, Garlic Herb Mashed Potatoes and Gravy, Candied Sweet Potatoes, Garlic-Lemon Green Beans with Toasted Cashews, Brown Sugar and Cinnamon Carrots, Creamed Corn, Chocolate Coconut Pie, and Warm Apple Crisp with Vanilla Ice Cream.
Once we realized it was already November (!!!), the other volunteers in the house realized we needed to start planning for Thanksgiving! Such a food centered holiday would take…
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There are those that think life is about titles, and checkpoints, and status, and image. Then there are those that think life is about living. Sometimes you can have both, but eventually you have to choose one over the other. I choose living over these invisible gremlins that rob us of joy. Happy Thanksgiving! … Continue reading Two Types of People