The Decade

By , December 28, 2019 9:07 pm

For a history teacher, especially one who does a lot of ancient history, a 10-year period is nothing. However, in the spirit of the end-of-decade lists about everything, here’s mine. These are personal events, not historical.

All at once in 2010: I turned 40, we got a cottage, and the Winter Olympics were in Vancouver. I remember watching the skating while Val cooked us dinner on the camp stove in the garage because our oven had not arrived yet at the cottage. It was a great start!

2011: We got Shadow! After sneaking around our backyard for months and being neighbour cat Dim Sum’s little shadow, we finally lured her in and she has been our baby every since.

2012: I left Student Council (for the first time) after advising since 2004. I also became Student Success teacher, a journey that changed my view on teaching.

2013: We got Bailey! This super shy guy cried on our deck for weeks so we just had to bring him in. He was afraid of everything yet he loved snuggling on the bed.

2014: The last year we visited the US, with trips to San Francisco and New York.  Skye, little Skye that is, my Sunnybrook regular horse, retired. I hope she’s still out there in a field somewhere being her glorious cranky self!

2015: Summer of the Pan Am Games – I watched a lot with free tickets from Val’s then-employer.

2016: I left my job as ACL of Canadian and World Studies. A lot went into that – I missed teaching my department how to do new things, especially at a time when I was so immersed in history with being a contributor to the CHY4U e-learning course – a project I’m really proud of. Our first trip to Bowen Island, BC to visit my cousin Emilie and her family. What a magical place. Read one of the best books on my all-time list, Empire of Cotton. Because of a connection made on the e-learning course, I was asked to become the editor of Rapport, the OHASSTA magazine, and I turned it into a blog. Very proud of that!

2017: We got Richard Parker, cat number four. I rode big Skye, a really professional type horse, all year long at Sunnybrook.

2018: THHSSSC brought February PD back! Good on us. Canada had an amazing Winter Olympics, winning the team gold in figure skating and Tessa and Scott won ice dance gold for the second time. From that high to the incredible low of the fire at Sunnybrook that killed the entire old barn – 16 wonderful animal friends. I will never forget them or that place. Skye lived but got sold away shortly after. Bailey also left us in 2018 – he was too sick to go on and deserved a good ending after his years of loyalty to us. Val and I went on our first bike trip together this summer.


2019: I left Student Council again. I’m very proud of them – they’re doing a great job. Val and I went on our second bike trip. I began to ride again (with Julie of course) at the Horse Palace. My new horse regular became Robin. It was great to see old friends like Queenie and Yukon. Unfortunately, Fletch reached the grand old age of 19 and was getting too sick. We all miss him; Shadow is just starting to come out of her shell after losing her best friend.

In sum:

It’s a good thing I have a blog or I wouldn’t remember what has happened to me over the past 10 years. My personal memory is so bad that I refer to Val as my external hard drive or surrogate memory. My memory is still pretty good for history, strangely.

The last decade was a huge one for me professionally. I’m so lucky to have had opportunities at THHSSSC, OHASSTA, the Historical Thinking Project, e-learning, and of course, YMCI.

Personally, I live a very happy and lucky life. I can’t complain at all – I live in a wonderful neighbourhood, have a generous and kind husband and have animals in my life!

2020 means the big 50 for me. We’ll see what it brings. Best of luck to everyone in 2020!


Leave a Reply

Panorama Theme by Themocracy